This Just In
  • SMG has been acquired by private equity firm Onex Corporation for an undisclosed sum. Onex says its acquisition of
  • SMG Holdings Inc. will close in early 2018. SMG manages 240 venues, including many of the major convention centers in the U.S.
  • Halifax Convention Centre in Nova Scotia, Canada, to debut Dec. 15 with first client event scheduled for Jan. 20, 2018. …
  • Three other events — Brides 2018, the Halifax Business Awards and the Franchise Expo —
  • also are booked for early 2018. … In all, the new facility already has 90 events on the books for 2018
  • Dan Lincoln will retire as President and CEO of the Cincinnati USA Convention & Visitors Bureau at the end of the year. He spent 11 years on
  • the job. COO Mike Laatsch will be interim CEO while a nationwide search for Lincoln’s successor takes place.
  • Shepard has acquired McCune Audio-Video-Lighting in a move to bolster Shepard’s presence in the western U.S. market. McCune has California
  • operations in Anaheim, Monterey and San Francisco and will be absorbed by Shepard’s AV department.

Chicago to Allow Off-Duty Cops to Patrol McCormick Place

Hil Anderson
, Senior Editor
June 24, 2016
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Chicago, IL – The Chicago City Council this week approved a plan to have moonlighting city police officers patrolling McCormick Place as a precaution against an armed attack.

The measure is designed to offset concerns over the possibility of someone with a gun targeting the massive convention center campus.

“There has been growing concern with security … in terms of attacks in Brussels or things that happened in France and, quite frankly, things that happened in Orlando,” Mike Merchant, Director of Intergovernmental Affairs for the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority (MPEA) told city aldermen.

Merchant told the council that organizers of major trade shows had expressed concerns about security at McCormick Place and a willingness to help pay to have more police on the scene, the Chicago Sun-Times said.

The newspaper said the plan would create a pool of around 135 off-duty officers who would be available to patrol the McCormick Place grounds while in uniform. A similar program is already in place at Navy Pier.

“We are looking to have multi-layered options to have security maybe roaming the floor, or maybe canine units,” Merchant said. “They (show organizers) will pay us and we will pay the police officers.”

The police officers are part of an overall plan to upgrade security at McCormick Place, including new surveillance cameras and possibly concrete vehicle barriers around the perimeter of the center.

Reach Mike Merchant at (312) 791-7500 or mmerchant@mpea.com

 

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