Thursday, May 2, 2013
Rooftop owners studying Ricketts' proposal
Wrigleyville rooftop owner Beth Murphy said Thursday she needs to see more details before forming an opinion on Tom Ricketts' proposal to renovate Wrigley Field.
Ricketts laid out his plans Wednesday, and that was the first time the rooftop owners saw the rendering for the 6,000 square foot Jumbotron that would be in left field. Rooftop owners, who have a contract with the Cubs to sell tickets to watch games from their buildings and give 17 percent of the revenue to the team, are worried the new signage will block their views.
Ricketts counters that without the ad revenue created by the new signage, the Cubs will have to look into moving from Wrigley.
"I think the conversation we had yesterday was the best we've had so far," Murphy said on "The Waddle & Silvy Show" on ESPN 1000. "And up till then, we really haven't had a seat at the table.
"We talked to the Cubs in February when we presented our proposal which was to put the signage on the rooftops. And they were not interested in that. And now this is the first time yesterday that we saw the outfield signs. We hadn't seen that up to then and neither had the neighborhood. The framework has been established and now it's time to vet some of the details. I need to see more details."
Murphy admitted she doesn't like the idea of the Jumbotron, although she knows her opinion doesn't matter unless it blocks the views from the rooftops.
As far as the Cubs moving, Ricketts said the team generates $600 million for the city, and that will go up to $700 million after the renovations. He said 1,300 permanent jobs will be created by the renovation, including a new hotel, and about 800 construction jobs.
When asked what impact a Cubs moved would have on her business and neighborhood, Murphy joked that it depends on what would happen to Wrigley and if another team would move in.
"I don't want the Cubs to move, and I don't think it would be a wise business decision," she said. "I think part of their business is Wrigleyville and is the neighborhood and is the ballpark."