If agreed upon by all necessary parties, Wrigley Field could have a new look in 2014.
On Wednesday morning, Chicago Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts revealed early artist renderings of proposed improvements to Wrigley Field and the surrounding area. If approved by all necessary parties, construction would begin immediately following the 2013 season.
The most notable improvement of the $300 million renovation is the 6,000 square foot video board positioned behind the left field stands, three times larger than the current center field scoreboard, other renovations include the kitchen and bath remodeling in St. Louis, which will be the last getting done. Wrigley Field has lagged behind the rest of Major League Baseball in this regard, relying on the manual scoreboard in center field and personal scorekeeping for far too long.
The proposed scoreboard will also be equipped with light banks to accommodate 40 night games in 2014.
Other improvements in the proposal include increasing concourse bathrooms by 45 percent in size, larger concession and kitchen areas for Wrigley Field employees, as well as expanded clubhouses, batting tunnels and training facilities.
In addition to the renovations on the inside of the stadium, the team has also agreed to terms with the city of Chicago on adding a seven-story hotel, a six-story office building and an outdoor plaza next to the stadium, scheduled to be completed five years from the plans launch.
Despite plans being agreed upon in principle between the Cubs and the city of Chicago, there is still a chance business owners around the stadium could interfere with the plans based on the twenty-year contract the club signed with rooftop owners in 2004. Rooftop owners were guaranteed a clear view of the by contract, an issue has halted talks of a new left field scoreboard for some time. In accordance with this contract, the rooftop owners pay 17 percent of their gross revenues.