Chicago Landmarks Commission Approves Larger Renovation Plan for Wrigley Field
The Chicago Landmarks Commission on Thursday unanimously approved plans for $575 million in additions and renovations to 100-year-old Wrigley Field, home to Major League Baseball's Chicago Cubs.
Plans include more outfield signage and commercial uses than a plan the commission approved in 2013. The Cubs submitted new plans to the city in May after breaking off negotiations with 15 neighborhood rooftop owners, who threatened to sue over signage included in the 2013 plan.
While the earlier plan called for a pair of signs, including a jumbotron-like video board in left field, current plans feature as many seven, including a 3,990-sq-ft video board.
In May, Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts indicated the current plan more closely reflects what the Cubs organization envisioned when it first proposed renovations for the ballpark. After reaching a stalemate with rooftop owners over the 2013 plan, the organization returned to its earlier scheme.
Rooftop owners, who have spent millions adding bleachers and benches to their venues, contend outfield signage included in both plans would violate a contract that keeps sight lines open in exchange for 17% in gross revenues they pay the ball club. The contract extends through 2023.
Ricketts has said outfield signage is necessary to fund renovations to Wrigley Field and construction of office, hospitality and restaurant space on parcels adjacent to the ball park.
Meantime, rooftop owners have indicated they won't sue the Cubs if the organization proceeds with the 2013 plan.
Cubs President of Business Operations Crane Kenney told reporters Thursday the organization is no longer concerned about a potential lawsuit.
Cubs intend to break ground on the project after this year's baseball season concludes.