The preliminary – but actual! – work at Wrigley Field continues this weekend in anticipation of some serious demolition work starting on Monday. According to reports in the Sun-Times, the Tribune, and DNAinfo, the Cubs will begin taking down the left and right field bleachers, together with the external walls, starting on Monday.
Once demolished, the left and right field bleacher sections will be rebuilt to serve at least four purposes: (1) increased space beneath the bleachers, (2) support for the seven outfield signs, (3) slight expansion of the bleachers (including a new patio section in left), and (4) general renovation. As a regular bleacher dweller, I am very excited about these things. Naturally.
You’ll note in those four items above that the Cubs do still plan/hope to include all seven of those outfield signs – the JumboTron in left, a smaller video board in right, the well-discussed script sign in right, a sign along each of the foul lines, and two additional outfield signs in left field, per the renderings – by Opening Day. Indeed, in the Sun-Times piece, Cubs spokesperson Julian Green emphasizes that while he’s not yet at liberty to say who will be the sponsors on all of the signs, the Cubs are “confident” that all seven will be up by next year. (As I’ve mentioned before, it remains plausible that the Cubs will have a couple of the signs up by Opening Day – the JumboTron and script sign, each of which has been planned for a longer time than the other five signs – and the rest coming up over the course of the season. That’s not necessarily the present expectation or hope, mind you; I’m simply saying it’s possible things play out that way, given the ongoing rooftop stuff and the process of securing sponsors. That would still be “next year,” for what it’s worth.)
Work on the triangle property – future home to the subterranean clubhouse and above-ground plaza – will start next week, too, but keep in mind that the work there this offseason is mostly about digging a gigantic hole. You are reminded, by the way, that Sheffield and Waveland Avenues, around Wrigley, will be closed all offseason.
Also in the Sun-Times piece, some great quotes from Green on the Cubs’ sense of urgency to get the work going, even though they don’t yet have an official, ceremonial groundbreaking ceremony scheduled. It’s coming at some point, but there are a lot of folks to coordinate. In a personal aside, I hope that I’ll be able to be there as well. It’s kind of a big deal.
In the meantime, some more shots from BN’er DarthIvy of the work going on right now at the park. There is a ton already underway: