Over the weekend, the Ricketts family unloaded their concepts for a total Wrigley Field renovation. At the same time they dangled another carrot for the city and its taxpayers: let us operate as "a private business" in and around Wrigley and we'll fund the five-year $300M renovation plan. While Mayor Rahm Emanuel isn't in love with Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts, this is an offer he won't take lightly (after all, Rahm is in love with electronic billboards). The "freedoms" requested have everything to do with revenue generation: more night games, concerts, street festivals, and signage (possibly including a jumbotron).
As for the structural renovations being touted, highlights include a larger clubhouse, larger concourses, new restaurants, new seats, more bathroom and concession areas, batting "tunnels", and a facade facelift. And, most critically, a new roof would replace the wooden one. "The marquee, the ivy, the scoreboard, we'd be the last ones who would want to touch those," Cubs business president Crane Kenney said. "The landmark ordinance really isn't our problem. It's just the ability to add some of the marketing elements we need and to host games when we feel like it." This announcement marks the latest in a Wrigley rollout of sorts, with the Ricketts having just bought the neighboring McDonald's property with a boutique hotel in mind.
·Cubs to fund $300 million renovation plan at Wrigley Field if the city eases restrictions [Trib]
·Wrigley Field Renovation coverage [Curbed Chicago]