Late last night/in the wee hours of the morning, the Chicago Cubs and the City of Chicago announced that they have come to an agreement, together with Alderman Tom Tunney, that will allow the Cubs to proceed with their $300 million renovation of Wrigley Field, as well as a $200 million hotel/office building project.
The agreement comes after months of wrangling, and is just an agreement between the Cubs/City/Alderman – many of its parts will require the usual approval from the City Council, various commissions, etc. So, while the largest hurdle has now been overcome, there are still things to do. Figuring out the rooftop response is going to be one of those things, too.
A press conference is expected at some point today to discuss the specifics (UPDATE: 11am CT), but, in the interim, you can see a number of details here from Danny Ecker at Crain’s, here from the AP, here from the Sun-Times, and here from the Tribune. I’ll lay out those details with exacting precision later today after the press conference, but if you’ve been following the story, you should already know the gist:
- Wrigley Field will get a $300 million makeover, more in function than form. Player facilities will be improved, fan amenities will be improved, structural integrity will be improved, etc.
- The Cubs will get a large video board in left field (JumboTron, probably about 5,000 to 6,000 square feet) and an advertising sign in right field. You should also expect increased signage within the park – the only reason the two outfield signs were the most discussed is because of the rooftop issue.
- The Cubs will get 40 night games, up from 30, plus the flexibility to increase that number depending on MLB’s request to flip day games to night games to accommodate national broadcasts.
- The Cubs will get to use Wrigley for up to four concerts, up from three.
- The Cubs will get to use Sheffield Avenue, which is already closed on game days, for street fairs.
- The Cubs will be permitted to build on the Triangle Property next to Wrigley Field, which building will include office space for the team, retail, and open air areas.
- The Ricketts Family will be allowed to build a hotel on the McDonald’s property, which will be affiliated with Sheraton, and will include a Chicago Athletic Club facility.
- The Cubs will work to develop an improved remote parking plan.
- Everyone seems to be working toward getting the necessary approvals in place by the end of the season so that the Cubs can break ground immediately after the final out.
You can get more specifics in the four articles linked above, and there will be much more to discuss later today. (UPDATE: The press conference is scheduled for 11am CT.)