CHICAGO (CBS) — In a major blow to McCormick Place and the city’s economy, the massive International Manufacturing Technology Show – which had been scheduled for September – has been canceled.
The Association for Manufacturing Technology said it has been monitoring the impact of the coronavirus, and has been trying to get clarity from Gov. JB Pritzker and Mayor Lori Lightfoot about the requirements for trade shows to take place in Chicago.
Pritzker’s reopening plan does not allow for trade shows to resume until Phase 5, which requires a vaccine, a widely available and effective treatment, or an elimination of new cases of COVID-19 over a sustained period of time. None of those things are expected to happen in the coming months, and thus, the trade show has been called off.
It had been planned for Sept. 14-19 at McCormick Place.
There will be a virtual event, which the AMT conceded would not be sufficient to replace the live show, but said is the option they have available.
Thus, the organization will launch the IMTS Network, a live-streaming channel of features and human stories from the manufacturing technology sector. It will also launch IMTS Spark, a digital platform to connect exhibitors and visitors, and provide educational and networking opportunities.
The trade show has been held in Chicago since 1947 and draws 130,000 attendees.