It’s nearly been a month since the Chicago Cubs offseason began, which means renovations at Wrigley Field once again take center stage in Wrigleyville.
Last offseason, the corner of Clark and Addison saw more changes as the Chicago Cubs organization continued their massive overhaul of Wrigley Field and the surrounding area.
Hotel Zachary and the restaurants surrounding it have turned out to be a big hit amongst Cubs fans on both game and non-game days (although we’ll see what kind of foot traffic they draw come winter). The Cubs’ office building at Gallagher Way added an ice cream shop to go with the Starbucks and Lucky Dorr establishments.
American Airlines 1914 Club marked the biggest addition inside the ballpark, located behind home plate. This exclusive luxury club added a badly-needed high-end experience for fans, corporate sponsors and the likes – with an all-you-can-eat and drink gameday package, including a full wait staff.
The dugouts were made wider and two new elevators were installed to access the upper deck section of the ballpark. Although it may not have been part of the renovation, the netting down each foul line also extended to the end of each respective dugout, as well.
So what’s up next?
This offseason, the Cubs enter the fifth and final phase of the 1060 Project and I, for one, cannot wait to see it come to fruition.
It’s early, but the Wrigley Field Twitter account tweeted aerial photos of inside the ballpark recently showing the construction and the removal of the Captain Morgan Club/Draft Kings Sports Zone.
However, something outside the ballpark that will be ready for the start of 2019 is the Addison & Clark apartment complex. The building includes luxury living on the upper floors with retail establishments, including Baseballism on the first floor at street level.
Lastly, the infamous Taco Bell on Addison St. lease ended Wednesday. The long-beloved restaurant is in the midst of being torn down in lieu of a new three-story building featuring a gym and more. There is no timetable on that project at this time.
(But, don’t worry, Taco Bell lives on in the neighborhood at a new location).
Inside the ballpark, the Cubs plan to add more additions similar to the 1914 Club – including the Maker’s Mark Barrel Room and The W Club.
The infamous visiting clubhouse that’s been used by the likes of Babe Ruth and even basketball legend Michael Jordan is scheduled to be re-done but it’s not written in stone to be finished in time for the 2019 season. It’s been known to be an annoyance to visiting teams in the past because it’s not up to date like most ballparks. In fact, it’s smaller than most Chicagoland high school and college facilities. Personally, if it makes it helps the Cubs, make it smaller than it already is.
Lastly, they’re set to renovate the upper decks, where aging seats creak and groan with every rise and fall of the crowd. If they can fix the few seats where a pole a ruining a view, I’m not sure there would be a bad view at Wrigley Field ever again. But I wouldn’t count on that.