SAN FRANCISCO – The Cubs don’t know who’ll be around by the time the franchise finishes the Wrigleyville project that’s now estimated to cost $575 million.
A legal battle with the rooftop owners is looming and the plans are pending city approval, but on Tuesday the Cubs unveiled renderings for their ideal vision of Wrigley Field.
President of business operations Crane Kenney told reporters in Chicago that construction would begin in July. The hope is by 2016, a 30,000-square-foot home clubhouse will be ready. In the majors, that would only be smaller than what the New York Yankees have in The Bronx.
“That’s pretty big,” Cubs manager Rick Renteria said. “The organization is just trying to accommodate or catch up to the rest of the baseball world in terms of amenities. It certainly sounds like we’ll have one of the premier facilities in the game.”
Instead of fans being right on top of the relievers, this proposal would move the bullpens underneath the left- and right-field bleachers.
“Whatever makes it more conducive for the pitchers to be prepared to do their job,” Renteria said. “Anybody would want to do that for their pitchers. I believe we’ll be able to see who’s warming up on the other side, just like in most ballparks. But I think it’s a good thing. They’ll be able to have their space.”
The Cubs hope to finish construction by Opening Day 2018.
“We’re looking forward to it,” Renteria said. “We’re very happy that the process is going to get going (and) in the near future we’ll all have some of the amenities that have been talked about for quite some time now.”