Anyone watching the Pittsburgh Pirates play the Chicago Cubs at the end of April may have noticed a couple things missing from the outfield bleachers at the friendly confines of Wrigley Field. Fans. Seats. At first glance, you may not have noticed the massive renovations currently ongoing at Wrigley Field, but upon further inspection, it’s difficult to miss the renovations and expansion known as the 1060 Project (approximately 5,000 outfield seats missing). The four-year plan, which will include major structural developments, bleacher expansion, new video boards, clubhouse and bullpen renovations and additions of retail and entertainment areas, is expected to carry an approximately $300 million dollar price tag.
Additionally, the ownership group of the Cubs, the Rickett’s family, is investing another $275 million dollars in a neighborhood development plan, which will include an open-air plaza, an office building, and conference meeting space, retail shops and a hotel. The $575 million investment represents the largest investment ever by a Chicago sports team and does not utilize direct tax dollars to support the improvements and additions. The project expects to create approximately 2,100 jobs, including 800 construction jobs. The general contractor on the project is Pepper Construction, a Chicago-based contractor with experience on large projects.
The 1060 Project also boasts certain green and sustainability initiatives for the renovations and construction, including reducing water use, recycling construction debris, utilizing recycled materials, using locals suppliers and manufacturers to reduce transportation emissions, using energy-efficient appliances, fixtures, water systems and heating and air-conditioning and using low-volatile organic compound paints, carpets and flooring to improve air quality in the ballpark.
For comparative purposes, PNC Park, built by the construction consortium of Barton Marlow and Dick Corporation was an approximately two-year project with a $262 million cost. Since its opening in 2001, PNC Park has historically ranked in the top 5 best ballparks in America, with a price tag that is less than half of the total bill footed by the most expensive ballparks, led by Yankee Stadium (no surprise) at $1.5 billion. Pirates fans can also enjoy their stadium at a reasonable value. A 2015 Team Marketing Report had the Pirates Fan Cost Index at $176 (23rd in the MLB), while the average Cubs family of four dropped $301 (3rd highest in the MLB) to head over to Wrigley to catch a game. You probably shouldn’t expect that to decrease with the renovations at Wrigley over the next four years, but Cubs ownership commits to much-needed upgrades while preserving the charm and historic appeal of one of the great American ballparks.
Contact us with questions regarding 1060 Projects and visit our Construction Services Industry Group page to learn more about our practice group.