Northerly Island will host as many as eight 30,000-capacity concerts a summer in addition to a full slate of smaller shows, promoters
The first major concert will be
About 16 to 24 concerts a year have been staged at the 8,500-capacity Charter One Pavilion at Northerly Island since 2005. The park district began exploring ideas to increase revenue at the temporary concert facility two years ago, Campana said, and Live Nation (which had been booking the facility) proposed reconfiguring the current stage to accommodate more fans. For the bigger shows, the stage will now face south instead of east. About 22,000 fans will be accommodated on a lawn behind the grandstand seats; fans will be able to see the stage from the lawn, but there will also be two large LED video screens and a new sound system installed. For shows like Phish, there will be a general-admission floor in front of the pavilion; the Buffett show, for which tickets go on sale next Monday, will have temporary seating in front of the grandstand area.
With four times as many people in attendance for the bigger shows, access to the concert will become more challenging, Campana acknowledged. He said that the main access road to Northerly Island, Linn White Drive, will be configured to allow more pedestrian traffic into the facility.
“With bands like Phish, the fans will be hanging out at the (
Campana also acknowledged that the bigger Charter One concerts could cannibalize some of the shows that would normally have played at other Live Nation venues, such as Alpine Valley and First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre in Tinley Park, Ill.
“We can’t let our own agenda get in the way of the agenda of the bands and fans,” Campana said. “There is a real interest in festival settings. For Phish, a place like Tinley never worked for them. They’re all about green grass and trees. It’s about giving artists options. With Northerly Island, you have a