11/16 Cubs get backing on Wrigley plan
The Cubs have the backing of some of Chicago’s and Wrigleyville’s labor officials, business and community leaders for their plan to invest a combined $400 million in Wrigley Field and the adjacent “triangle parcel.” The plan, the Cubs say, will create 1,000 construction jobs, hundreds more permanent jobs, and long-lasting economic and tax revenue benefits to the city, the county and the state of Illinois.
The economic stimulus plan for renovating Wrigley Field and the land along Clark Street just west of the ballpark is estimated to generate more than $3 billion in economic growth in the next 35 years, according to the Cubs. Of that $3 billion, the plan is projected to generate $454 million in new sales, hotel, property, restaurant and personal income taxes for the city, county and state of Illinois.
Besides the jobs, the $200 million bonded portion of the program will be based only on the incremental growth in the amusement tax tacked onto tickets bought by fans attending games at Wrigley Field. No other fans attending games at other venues will pay.
This plan also helps the Cubs preserve Wrigley Field. Proceeds from the bond offering will be devoted to shoring up Wrigley’s infrastructure to ensure the ballpark can be preserved for the next 50 years.
The bond program will allow the Cubs owners to invest $200 million in private dollars in developing the triangle parcel of land. Also, according to the research firm Conventions, Sports and Leisure International, the combined $400 million program will immediately boost sales tax revenues for construction supplies and generate a long-term increase to the annual sales tax and property tax revenues to the city, county and state by $9 million.
— Carrie Muskat