Wrigley Field renovations now might take an extra year

The bleachers in Wrigley Field, being worked on this offseason.
The bleachers in Wrigley Field, being worked on this offseason. (USATSI)

The Cubs are in the process of essentially rebuilding all of venerable Wrigley Field, piece by piece. The project was originally slated to take four offseasons. We already know the bleachers portion of the rebuild is up first and is going to bleed into the regular season -- with the right field portion not expected to be finished until June -- but now from chairman Tom Ricketts comes word that the entire project might take a fifth year.

From suntimes.com:

“There will be four more years,” Ricketts said Wednesday after speaking at a City Club of Chicago luncheon. “The way we project it now is four more years of construction.”

Dennis Culloton, a spokesman for Ricketts, confirmed Wednesday evening that the project could very well bleed into a fifth offseason, one more than the original plan.

“That could still be the way it works out,” Culloton said of the original four-phase plan. “But it could take longer. Just take this winter for example, and we have found not only the problem with the weather but the water pipes that we had no control over. It could be four years, it could be five. It’s hard to say.”

So it looks like the new-and-improved Wrigley Field won't be complete until 2019. It's a shame they've run into these issues, but it needed to be done. The stadium has been falling apart for the past several years. Anyone who has walked around Fenway Park knows how much better an old ballpark can become through renovation and Wrigley is an iconic venue.

Also included in the Sun Times report: The Cubs are considering covering the bleachers -- until they are complete -- with a tribute to recently-passed franchise icon Ernie Banks.

CBS Sports Writer

Matt Snyder has been a baseball writer with CBS Sports since 2011. A member of the BBWAA, he's now covered every World Series since 2010. The former Indiana University baseball player now lives on the... Full Bio

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