Jump to content





Bleacher Nation is on Facebook, and you should totally "Like" us:
 


Bleacher Nation is also on Twitter, and you should totally follow us:




Upcoming Calendar Events

There are no forthcoming calendar events

Today's birthdays

No members are celebrating a birthday today

Photo

What about an in-town move?


  • Please log in to reply
12 replies to this topic

#1 Luke

Luke

    Bleacher Hero

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,088 posts
  • Twitter:@ltblaize
  • LocationMaryland

Posted 25 January 2014 - 05:11 PM

This started on the main page, but I figured it'd get lost there and I'm genuinely interested in hearing why these locations won't work.  

 

The repost:

 

What about moving, but moving just a little. After a scan of the area on Google Earth, this complete non expert on all things Chicago and real estate spotted a few options.

Again, I’m not from Chicago. Natives, feel free to tell me why these won’t work.

 

Option 1: Cricket Hill. It looks like there is plenty of room in that current park for a stadium the size of Wrigley or larger, it’s on the waterfront, it has a large parking lot to the north that could be converted to a parking garage, and it’s right on Lakeshore Drive. Yes, it would cost the city a park, but there are quite a few other parks on the lake shore in that area, so that might be tolerable. From the air and to an outsider, it looks like such a perfect spot for ballpark I kind of can’t believe no one has built one there yet.

 

Option 2: Waveland Park Softball fields, the lake side of Lakeshore at Waveland. Not as much parking obviously available here, and that bird sanctuary to the south could be a problem. But it is on Lakeshore, so traffic is no worse of a problem than it is now for Cub games. As for where to replace the lost softball fields? How about Clark and Addison?

 

Option 3: It looks like there is a giant empty lot south of the cemeteries where West Grace meets Clark. Not sure what is there or who uses it today, and the lot to either the east or the west would have be acquired to squeeze in a stadium, but it could be doable. Turn Clark and Addison into a giant parking garage and funnel the foot traffic to the stadium right up Clark or Seminary.

 

Option 4: There is another collection of parks and diamonds south of Webster between N Larabee and N Halsted. It looks like there would be plenty of room there, but I’m not sure how well eating up a mid-city park would go over with the residents. Traffic could be a problem, depending on how good of a thoroughfare Lincoln is.



#2 fromthemitten

fromthemitten

    sleeps in too late to answer the calendar trivia

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,478 posts
  • Twitter:fromthemitten
  • Locationin a van down by the river

Posted 25 January 2014 - 05:16 PM

The cost of constructing a park from the ground up (including the cost of real estate + demolishing Wrigley Field) with no public financing is the biggest hurdle



#3 MichiganGoat

MichiganGoat

    Give me a BEER

  • Moderators
  • 3,799 posts
  • Twitter:MichiganGoat
  • Facebook:michigangoat
  • LocationGrand Rapids, MI

Posted 25 January 2014 - 05:24 PM

The cost of constructing a park from the ground up (including the cost of real estate + demolishing Wrigley Field) with no public financing is the biggest hurdle

That's why I say if a move happens it will be the Burbs, one of them will give the Cubs EVER and ANY THING and the Cubs will look at that vs the headache of Chicago... IF they choose to move.

And I am now about 50% move and that's a huge increase from this time last year, by the end of the year I'm sure I'll be close to 100%

MichiganGoat on Twitter

"There are a lot of guys who are respected but not liked" - Ron Santo


#4 Luke

Luke

    Bleacher Hero

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,088 posts
  • Twitter:@ltblaize
  • LocationMaryland

Posted 25 January 2014 - 05:34 PM

The cost of constructing a park from the ground up (including the cost of real estate + demolishing Wrigley Field) with no public financing is the biggest hurdle

 

Fair points, but I think those are doable hurdles.  That's a separate discussion though.  I'm more interested in if any of these would actually work.

 

In a previous thread I asked why Rosemont wouldn't, and got some good answers.  



#5 MichiganGoat

MichiganGoat

    Give me a BEER

  • Moderators
  • 3,799 posts
  • Twitter:MichiganGoat
  • Facebook:michigangoat
  • LocationGrand Rapids, MI

Posted 25 January 2014 - 05:54 PM

I'd think the parks would be a difficult sale, I'm not that familiar with Chicago but my wife was a Brooklyn girl for ten years and she talks about how much pride and protection everyone in NYC area had with their parks. If the Cubs try to remove a park the backlash would be harsh, the softball area sounds more amicable but I don't know.

But here is my great fear as it seems that the rooftops have a stronger case that I want to believe. What if this happened:

The Cubs block the rooftops with those blinders and the backlash was huge. The Tribune Co saw an opportunity to get some free money and sent Crane there to negotiate a settlement. Tribune said they wanted at least 15% Crane started at 20% the rooftops wanted promised and protection that nothing would getvin the way and that the Cubs would never move. Crane at the time (as most of us would) figured sure we'll never put up a jumbotron because Wrigley. So he said well how about 17% and smiled the way to his bosses never thinking this would be a problem. The Cubs might be fucked.

MichiganGoat on Twitter

"There are a lot of guys who are respected but not liked" - Ron Santo


#6 Luke

Luke

    Bleacher Hero

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,088 posts
  • Twitter:@ltblaize
  • LocationMaryland

Posted 25 January 2014 - 06:09 PM

The flaw in that is, according to Brett, the Cubs said at the convention that blocking sight lines wasn't a problem.  The rooftops were threatening to sue over zoning rules, not breach of contract.

 

If that is true, and no one to my knowledge has called the Cubs out on that front, then the Cubs could erect a circus tent over the ballpark if they wanted, so long as it didn't break current zoning, and the rooftops couldn't do a thing about it.



#7 MichiganGoat

MichiganGoat

    Give me a BEER

  • Moderators
  • 3,799 posts
  • Twitter:MichiganGoat
  • Facebook:michigangoat
  • LocationGrand Rapids, MI

Posted 25 January 2014 - 06:28 PM

Oh I know it's my die Hardian conspiracy but I've lost faith that the Cubs will win this and starting to think the only option will be to move.

MichiganGoat on Twitter

"There are a lot of guys who are respected but not liked" - Ron Santo


#8 OCCubFan

OCCubFan

    Bleacher Bum

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 252 posts
  • LocationSanibel Island

Posted 25 January 2014 - 07:20 PM

If you want to get a good deal with tough-negotiating opponents, you must convince them you are willing to walk away (i.e., move).

 

None of us know whether fans would travel to the suburbs to see the Cubs, but the Ricketts almost certainly have already done a marketing study about whether fans would travel to the suburbs,

 

I notice that the Braves did such a study and discovered most of their fans were located north of Atlanta; therefore, they are abandoning Atlanta and moving to the suburbs. In their case, Atlanta wasn't even hamstringing them, just not willing to finance a new stadium. Of course, the suburbs were willing to put up big bucks to induce them to move.

 

As Brett points out, the biggest hurdle is the higher cost of building a new stadium from the ground up.

 

But doing business in Chicago is a huge handicap: the rooftops, the alderman, the high amusement tax, no public money, the zoning, the landmark status etc. This costs the Cubs a lot of money. Then you add in the poor TV situation and, as Brett points out, the possibility that the days of the huge TV deals will have passed by the time the Cubs are ready for a deal. Then consider the lack of skyboxes---probably the biggest revenue generator after TV for most teams----and the relatively small capacity of Wrigley field. In addition, after opposing players see the piss-poor visiting clubhouse and lack of a batting cage, they might well require a lot more money to sign with the Cubs. The sum of all these factors puts the Cubs at a huge disadvantage to other large-market teams.

 

I fear that if the Cubs do not move out of Wrigley and Chicago, a hundred years from now, Oswego Chris's great-grandson will be writing a revised edition of a book titled "206 Reasons...."



#9 MichiganGoat

MichiganGoat

    Give me a BEER

  • Moderators
  • 3,799 posts
  • Twitter:MichiganGoat
  • Facebook:michigangoat
  • LocationGrand Rapids, MI

Posted 25 January 2014 - 07:48 PM

I still say the "Eastern Chicago Cubs of Western Michigan by Founders Brewing" is the best option. The Old Style can will be replaced by the All Day IPA can and I will personally serve everyone thier beer. It's a win win.

MichiganGoat on Twitter

"There are a lot of guys who are respected but not liked" - Ron Santo


#10 Scotti

Scotti

    Bleacher Bum

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 40 posts

Posted 26 January 2014 - 03:11 AM

 

The cost of constructing a park from the ground up (including the cost of real estate + demolishing Wrigley Field) with no public financing is the biggest hurdle

 

Fair points, but I think those are doable hurdles.  That's a separate discussion though.  I'm more interested in if any of these would actually work.

 

In a previous thread I asked why Rosemont wouldn't, and got some good answers.  

 

 

 

Another spot in Chicago fixes little.  You still have the Machine to answer to with whatever alderman and local businesses trying to control your business.  Not to mention the ever present threat of rising "amusement" taxes.  It isn't just the rooftops, bars and Tunney.  The Cubs are the step-child here and the Chicago Machine is simply never going to see Cinderella when they look at the Cubs.  They see a cash cow--someone to bring in revenue and paper over their loses.  The don't see a star.  They don't even see a partner and never have.   

 

If the Cubs were to move to a different facility in Chicago (where some, if not all of the "impossible money" I referred to in a different post was actually possible), the Chicago Machine would see all of that revenue the Cubs were bringing in and simply raise taxes and fees so the Machine could get its "fair share" to cover its massive loses.

 

The villages of Arlington Heights, Schaumburg and Rosemont simply don't view business that way (coincidentally, all three are villages with AH being the most populous village in the US).  They each have a long track record of dealing with businesses in pro-business fashion (Woodfield, All-State Arena, The Racetrack).  Chicago is simply too needy for them to keep their hands out of Cinderella's purse.    



#11 OCCubFan

OCCubFan

    Bleacher Bum

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 252 posts
  • LocationSanibel Island

Posted 26 January 2014 - 05:35 AM

 

 

The cost of constructing a park from the ground up (including the cost of real estate + demolishing Wrigley Field) with no public financing is the biggest hurdle

 

Fair points, but I think those are doable hurdles.  That's a separate discussion though.  I'm more interested in if any of these would actually work.

 

In a previous thread I asked why Rosemont wouldn't, and got some good answers.  

 

 

 

Another spot in Chicago fixes little.  You still have the Machine to answer to with whatever alderman and local businesses trying to control your business.  Not to mention the ever present threat of rising "amusement" taxes.  It isn't just the rooftops, bars and Tunney.  The Cubs are the step-child here and the Chicago Machine is simply never going to see Cinderella when they look at the Cubs.  They see a cash cow--someone to bring in revenue and paper over their loses.  The don't see a star.  They don't even see a partner and never have.   

 

If the Cubs were to move to a different facility in Chicago (where some, if not all of the "impossible money" I referred to in a different post was actually possible), the Chicago Machine would see all of that revenue the Cubs were bringing in and simply raise taxes and fees so the Machine could get its "fair share" to cover its massive loses.

 

The villages of Arlington Heights, Schaumburg and Rosemont simply don't view business that way (coincidentally, all three are villages with AH being the most populous village in the US).  They each have a long track record of dealing with businesses in pro-business fashion (Woodfield, All-State Arena, The Racetrack).  Chicago is simply too needy for them to keep their hands out of Cinderella's purse.    

 

Along with your post in the other thread, this is really well stated.



#12 Brett

Brett

    Administrator

  • Administrators
  • 3,646 posts
  • Twitter:BleacherNation
  • Facebook:BleacherNation

Posted 26 January 2014 - 12:04 PM

Moving in-town is an interesting thought, but as some have said, I'm just not sure how much it ameliorates the Cubs' problems (without risking attendance - to that, I'm just referring to the unknown). The rooftops go away, but what about other neighbors? What about the taxes? What about the political machine? And the big one: building a new, privately-funded (as it would be in Chicago) state-of-the-art ballpark is an $800 to $1 billion investment, at least. Not sure if there's the stomach for that kind of investment right now (and what kind of impact it could have on the baseball product for a long time). 

 

That all said, an in-city move seems more plausible than a suburban move. Teams don't move to suburbs anymore for reasons that I have foolishly assumed were obvious.



#13 Luke

Luke

    Bleacher Hero

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,088 posts
  • Twitter:@ltblaize
  • LocationMaryland

Posted 26 January 2014 - 01:21 PM

If the Cubs did move in town, I don't think the machine would be an issue.  If anything, the machine might smooth the path.

 

If the Cubs could demonstrate to the mayor's office that the mayor will get X dollars from taxes in Wrigley, but more than X dollars from taxes at Crickett Hill, I suspect the mayor and his cronies might suddenly discover that moving the Cubs is the greatest idea in Chicago history. 

 

The biggest obstacle would be the cost of the stadium, and that would be a problem.  

 

On the other hand, suppose the Cubs were certain they could clear an additional $80 million a year from parking fees, more non-baseball events, more skyboxes, more advertising, and so forth.  Kick $50 million per annum back into paying off the stadium bill and they could clear a billion dollar debt in 20 years and still see a net increase in baseball available revenue over what they would have at Wrigley.

 

I have no idea if those numbers add up (I pretty much picked them at random for example purposes), but I suspect there is a certain of amount of additional potential revenue that could come from a new stadium that would allow the Cubs to privately finance it and still come out with more resources starting from the day they moved into their new home.

 

It wouldn't be easy, though.  






0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

Bleacher Nation is not affiliated in any way with Major League Baseball or the Chicago National League Ballclub (that's the Cubs).