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Bears president: No current plans to expand Soldier Field

ORLANDO, Fla. — Earlier this month, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said that the Chicago Park District was exploring the possibility of expanding Soldier Field by 5,000 seats.

The extra seats, of course, would immensely improve the city’s chances of hosting a Super Bowl in the future.

But on Monday, Bears president Ted Phillips told the Sun-Times that right now there aren’t any plans in place to expand Soldier Field, which has the smallest seating capacity in the NFL.

“First of all, we are always open to listening to any ideas to improve Soldier Field,” Phillips said at the NFL owners meetings. “We talk to the Park District and general superintendent Mike Kelly all the time. We’re always trying to find ways to improve the experience and see what we can do. But currently there are no plans. There are no plans being developed. So we’re just going to kind of take things as we go and see what comes out of it. But there are no current plans.”

Emanuel hasn’t hid his desire to host the Super Bowl. After New York and New Jersey hosted Super Bowl XLVIII, there’s been plenty of interest from cold-weather teams with outdoors stadiums.

Phillips said Chicago would be “a great city” for the Super Bowl. But a lot has to be done before they even become an option.