Saturday, January 19, 2013
Updated: January 20, 7:00 PM ET
Cubs plan $300M Wrigley renovation
By Bruce Levine and Jesse Rogers
The Chicago Cubs announced Saturday plans for a $300 million renovation of Wrigley Field. The proposed project would be completed over five offseasons, beginning in the fall of 2014 if the team's ownership can get approval from the city of Chicago.
"We have an opportunity here that is tremendous," owner Tom Ricketts said at the Cubs' fan convention Saturday. "Give us some relief on some of the restrictions and we will take care of the rest."
Among the proposed changes:
New underground batting cages that would be configured with access to the new clubhouse and dugout.
Expanding the concourses in the upper and lower bowls and renovating the suites and luxury boxes.
Adding an LED board in left field similar to the one in right field. The scoreboard in center field will not be altered except to have the LED board directly under the scoreboard removed.
Restoring the brick exterior of the park back to its form from 1935.
Rewiring the entire ballpark and upgrading the plumbing system.
A new area behind the upper deck will be created with extra space for entertainment and concessions. A new fan deck will be placed behind the left field bleachers with a proposed lounge and restaurant attached.
The project would create 2,100 jobs and have an economic impact of $1.2 billion of new revenue for the city and the Cubs, according to the team's study and research.
President of business operations Crane Kenney said that the team will not have to play their home games at another venue while the project is being completed. He also said that they are only in the concept stage at this time. The Cubs will need the city's approval to sign off on the project and funding before work can begin.