This update is something more akin to a “the update is that there is no update” kind of thing. We’ve heard almost nothing on the status of the Wrigley Field renovation talks since early August, when the general story was something like this: City Council has given the green light for the Cubs to proceed with the renovation, but the Cubs do not want to move forward until they have confidence that the rooftops will not sue them as soon as the outfield signs go up (the outfield signs being one of the primary funding mechanisms for the renovation, itself). The Cubs also want to have complete control to do what they want in the outfield when the current rooftop agreement expires in about 10 years.
Against that backdrop, legislation just passed that protects the rooftops from a law that, in most cases, prohibits selling all-you-can-drink entry into bars. The Cubs opposed that legislation, according to Crain’s, I’d think for obvious reasons. It’s unclear whether this was all an expected outcome, and whether it has any impact on the Cubs/rooftops discussions. You’ll note that, when the Cubs first said they couldn’t proceed with the renovation until they were confident that the rooftops wouldn’t sue, the Cubs also said that they wanted strict enforcement of existing ordinances. It was a bit unclear exactly what that meant, but this legislation makes me wonder if the Cubs were angling to have the rooftops subject to the no-unlimited-booze law, and maybe the Cubs just lost that fight.
We’ll see what comes next. We know that the Cubs and rooftops have been discussing a possible Sheffield patio extension, but we don’t know if that’s gained much traction in the community (it was not part of the plan approved by City Council, so it would require new approvals).
What we do know is that the clock is ticking on the Cubs’ ability to start the renovations in earnest after this season ends, and that clock may have already reached zero. Losing another full construction season would suck.
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