Daily digest: Paris 2024 Olympic torch designer selected, Chicago Bears new stadium, and more news

Happy Friday

Daily digest: Paris 2024 Olympic torch designer selected, Chicago Bears new stadium, and more news

The Loeb Boathouse in Central Park. (Ajay Suresh/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY 2.0)

Happy Friday! From an update on Chicago Bears’ stadium to the soon-to-reopen Loeb Boathouse in Central Park, here’s all the news you need to know as we slide into the weekend:

Loeb Boathouse in Central Park will reopen this summer

New York City Mayor Eric Adams and NYC Parks Commissioner Sue Donoghue announced that Legends Hospitality will manage the Loeb Boathouse in Central Park. The 151-year-old restaurant and venue closed in December due to rising, unsustainable costs.

Legends Hospitality will invest $3.25 million in the venue, plus $250,000 for structural maintenance. The group plans to connect the lower and upper patios, upgrade building services, renovate the restrooms, and redo the outdoor bar to expand views from the pathways to the lake.

“The Central Park Boathouse has been a landmark for generations of New Yorkers,” said Mayor Adams in a press release. “When it closed last year, many worried about its future, but our administration moved quickly to keep this piece of New York City history alive. Thanks to the fast work of NYC Parks, we’ve selected a new operator so the Boathouse can come back better than ever, ensuring tourists and New Yorkers alike can enjoy this beautiful space and scenery once again.”

If its application receives final approval from the city, Legends Hospitality will manage the venue for ten years. The Boathouse will reopen this summer.

In New York, the global company runs concessions at One World Observatory, Yankee Stadium, and Oculus Beer Garden, among other venues. At the Loeb Boathouse, diners can look forward to $23 omelets and a $25 hamburger.

Selldorf Architects converts an old car showroom into Hauser & Wirth’s second L.A. location

New York’s Selldorf Architects has turned a 1930s Spanish Colonial Revival car showroom into blue chip gallery Hauser & Wirth’s second Los Angeles location. The firm, in partnership with local executive architect ERĀS, carved out 6,000 square feet of exhibition space from the 11,000-square-foot building in West Hollywood. Inside, concrete floors and exposed wood bow trusses provide a minimal backdrop for the work on display, while large windows at street level allow unobstructed views into the gallery. The Westside location’s inaugural exhibition, People Are Strange, coincides with Frieze LA Week.

This is Selldorf Architects’ second L.A. commission for Hauser & Wirth. In 2016, it completed a gallery in the Arts District and additionally has worked on renovations at several of the gallery’s international outposts.


Chicago Bears close in on stadium site in Arlington Heights

In an open letter this month, the owners of the Chicago Bears said they had closed on a property in Arlington Heights indicating their plan to build a new football stadium complex outside of Chicago instead of staying put in Soldier Field.

“Last fall, we released an open letter confirming the team had reached an agreement for the purpose of acquiring 326 acres of property in Arlington Heights to secure the potential of beginning a new and exciting chapter for the Bears, our fans, the Chicagoland community, and the State of Illinois,” the February 15 letter said. “This week, we took another step toward realizing that vision by closing on the Arlington Park property. Finalizing the purchase does not guarantee the land will be developed, but it is an important next step in our ongoing evaluation of the opportunity. There is still a tremendous amount of due diligence work to be done to determine if constructing an enclosed state-of-the-art stadium and multi-purpose entertainment district is feasible.”

In September the Chicago Bears shared more details on their plan to decamp from Soldier Field to a new location, a 326-acre mixed-use campus in Arlington Park in Chicago’s northwestern suburbs. If the Bears go forward with the project, it will be one of the largest-ever developments in the Midwest.

Washington, D.C. Metro looks to roll out open gangway cars

Joining metros in Toronto, Paris, London, and most recently, New York, Metro is considering adding open gangway trains to its fleet.

At a recent Metro board meeting, Metro General Manager Randy Clarke shared that the agency is weighing the costs and benefits of the new designs. Ultimately, the trains may feature sausage links of open gangways, with two to four open cars attached to other open cars. According to DCist, the decision may come down to maintenance: Metro doesn’t currently have a repair shop that can service eight train cars simultaneously, so it would either need to build a new repair facility or opt for the pairs of open gangway trains.

H/t to DCist

Mathieu Lehanneur to design Olympic and Paralympic torches for the Paris 2024 games

Paris 2024 has selected French designer Mathieu Lehanneur to create the Olympic and Paralympic torches and cauldrons.

“What a joy to be part of this adventure and what a responsibility to contribute to the history of the Games in this way! Partnering with Paris 2024 to design the torches and cauldrons means giving a visible form to a set of values and transforming a state of mind into iconic objects. Faster, Higher, Stronger – Together,” Mathieu Lehanneur said in a news release. “My objective is to take this Olympic motto and add: more beautiful, lighter, more lavish.”


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Lehanneur is a multidisciplinary artist and designer who’s crafted everything from retail interiors to boats, to solar trees and foldable e-bikes. He notably proposed replacing the scorched Norte Dame cathedral spire with a flame-like sculpture. His torch and cauldron designs will be unveiled later this year.