The area west of Wrigley Field used to be a coal yard, with a rail line running between the coal storage and the ballpark. Here’s a view of the area during the 1929 World Series:
Then it hosted a burger joint, later the famed Yum Yum Donuts and a car wash, and in its final years before the Ricketts family took over the team, a parking lot. With trailers for the Cubs staff who couldn’t fit inside the ballpark’s small offices.
Now, the triangle-shaped property west of Wrigley Field, east of Clark Street and south of Waveland Avenue hosts a seven-story building that will have Cubs offices, a Cubs Store (that opened to the public at 5 a.m. Monday), other retail, bars and restaurants, and a large, open plaza that will host public events.
For now, thanks to Ald. Tom Tunney, it will only be open to Cubs ticket holders on game days. That could change sometime in the future.
One of the biggest changes for the ballpark itself is located on the plaza. That’s Gate H, the new “western gate” to the ballpark. Cubs VP of Sales and Marketing Colin Faulkner told me this morning that fans can enter through that gate and go directly up to the back of the terrace (200) level, thus bypassing the crowds on the concourse. The new gate will do a lot to alleviate congestion on the concourse, particularly on the left-field side, and make it a lot easier to leave the ballpark when games are over.
The Cubs put together this video on plaza construction.
The Making of the Park at Wrigley
It's (almost) time. The Park at Wrigley opens tomorrow! Many thanks to everyone who has worked so hard to make tomorrow possible. We can't wait to see neighbors, visitors, friends and fans. The ribbon cutting ceremony starts at 10 a.m. We'll see you there!Posted by Park at Wrigley on Sunday, April 9, 2017
It’s only a few hours until game time! When I was in the area earlier this morning, things were already hopping. Expect it to feel like a playoff-type atmosphere when you arrive. If you do have tickets to tonight’s game, the Cubs recommend you arrive early, especially because the raising of the World Series championship banner ceremony is expected to begin around 6:15 p.m. If you’re not going, you can watch the banner ceremony live on MLB Network. Game coverage tonight is on ESPN.
Here are a couple of quotes from the opening ceremony from Cubs President of Business Operations Crane Kenney, and Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts.
“Our vision was to create a neighborhood center where families, fans and visitors can find entertainment, unique and local food options and daily attractions in an urban park setting,” said Kenney. “The Park at Wrigley will be instrumental in hosting farmer’s markets, family movie nights and an ice rink. The goal is to offer our visitors a dynamic neighborhood entertainment destination.”
Hickory Street Capital and Chicago Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts echoed the sentiments saying, “This park is the embodiment of my family’s commitment to being a good neighbor. We are proud to create this space for the community.”
Whether you’re a baseball junkie or casual fan, games are better at the ballpark. Grab seats from our partner StubHub and be part of the action at Wrigley Field. And, download the StubHub app to choose the perfect seats with 360° views from your section.