Friday, April 19, 2019

Up 4 percent? Or down ¼ of 1 percent? Both are true of Chicago these days

Call it a battle of dueling perceptions, if you will.
Fewer residents, but many more visitors?!?
For it was all over just about every publication Thursday that Chicago’s overall population is, once again, on the decline

TO BE EXACT, Chicago’s population dropped by 0.23 percent. In fact, just about every place in Illinois was on the decline, with the percentages being larger in other places. Which means that the losses hurt those places more, since Chicago has so many more residents it can spare.
Credit, or blame, for Rahm?

So how exactly does Chicago choose to combat this factoid – which can be used as ammunition by those people of ideological leanings that make them want to lambast the city for everything they see as wrong with the state of Illinois as a whole?

We got city officials to release their official study of tourism to Chicago.

Which officials said was at a record-high of 57.7 million people during 2018.
Made front page of World's Greatest Newspaper

ALL OF WHOM stayed at hotels, ate at restaurants and shopped at stores buying all kinds of the tacky trinkets most of us wouldn’t even think of buying. Too touristy!

The increase continues a trend dating back to 2013, which means this is something that soon-to-be former Mayor Rahm Emanuel will boast about when discussing the legacy of his eight years as the head of Chicago city government.

Which might make him like the almighty Wizard of Oz, telling us to “pay no attention to that man behind the curtain” every time someone brings up the fact that Chicago’s population has declined ever so slightly every year since 2015.
Placing us even closer to that day likely to come some time by 2030 when Houston manages to surpass Chicago as the nation’s third largest city – we’re Number Four will be the chant we’ll have to take up. Even though as far as anyone who lives here already knows, our city is really Number One. Something that all those millions of tourists have figured out for themselves.


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