(CBS) You could say Cubs owner Tom Ricketts has options.
If Ricketts decides to bolt from Wrigley Field, he can choose between Rosemont and now Cicero as a landing place for his baseball team.
Cicero town president Larry Dominick, a self-proclaimed lifelong Cubs fan, has offered Ricketts and the Cubs 50 acres of free land to “build a new stadium with significantly increased seating, more parking and the opportunity to generate more advertising revenues.”
“Cicero is willing to give the Ricketts’ family what they need to make the Cubs World Series contenders every year, not just once in a century,” Dominick said.
Ricketts is currently stuck in a battle with the city as he looks to have landmark restrictions lifted on Wrigley Field to allow more night games and add signage and an electronic scoreboard to the outfield.
“A new, unrestricted jumbo-tron and advertising boards would bring in new revenues for the team,” Dominick said. “The team could keep the Chicago name and sell stadium naming-rights.”
“What’s holding the Cubs back are the restrictions of an outmoded stadium. The Cubs are playing baseball in a straightjacket. If they were to come to Cicero, the restrictions would be lifted. We’d be talking about World Series contenders.”
Meanwhile, the Cubs had another meeting with neighbors to discuss the renovation plans.
Wrigleyville neighbors and business owners pitched critical questions about how a major facelift of the facility will affect them.
The Cubs rolled out images of a new west side gate, new clubhouse, wider concourses, free remote parking with up to a thousand spaces and up to 42 percent more restrooms.
All aimed at priming the historic park for a new age.
“We have got a ballpark that is going to celebrate its 100th birthday next year and we need to invest in it if it is going to survive,” said Mike Lufrano, Cubs VP of Communications.