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updated: 11/17/2021 7:39 AM

Chicago alderman wants city to purchase Bears, sell shares to fans

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  • Video: Longshot plan to buy Bears

ABC 7 Chciago

In a bid to keep the Bears in the city, Alderman George Cardenas said he'll introduce an ordinance for the city to purchase the team and sell shares to fans, ABC 7 Chicago is reporting.

The Bears and Churchill Downs formally announced on Sept. 29 that they reached a $197.2 million agreement for the sale of Arlington Park. The deal could close in late 2022 or early 2023.

Cardenas' proposal is similar to how the Green Bay Packers are structured. It's a long-shot effort to keep the Bears in city. Whether it would pass the city council, or whether an offer would be accepted by the team, was not clear.

The Bears are locked into a lease with the Chicago Park District for Soldier Field that runs until 2033. The team would have to pay a $84 million penalty to get out of it as soon as 2026, which is around the time many observers estimate a new multibillion-dollar stadium in Arlington Heights would be built.