Wrigley Field, the home of the Chicago Cubs, is considered one of the most iconic sporting venues in the country, and in the near future it may be getting a major modern upgrade.
As reported by ESPN Chicago, the team is looking to install jumbotron screens above the outfield walls and join enter the twenty-first century with all of the other Major League teams. A proposal was approved by Chicago’s landmarks commission, which had to be included in the decision given Wrigley’s status as a city landmark.
Known for its historic feel, created by old-school touches such as the hand-operated outfield scoreboard and ivy covered walls, the ballpark did not even possess lights for night games until 1988 when Major League Baseball forced their hand. Given that resistance to change, it is surprising that the Cubs would seek to make such a radical addition.
The shock of the news was met with more than a little disapproval. Owners of the buildings around the ballpark, which are profitable for their famous rooftop seats, fear that the screens will block the view of the field. Other fans just want to maintain the classic vibe of the park:
Jumbotron at Wrigley Field?? Say it ain't so? Why oh why? In left field no less! Boo!
— Rob Lopes (@tireguyeighty8) July 12, 2013
While the decision may not be popular, Cubs management claims that the revenue that would come from advertising on the screens is needed to pay for a planned renovation of the park.
Adding a jumbotron to one of baseball’s most hallowed halls may turn out to be another example of trying to fix what is, in the eyes of the fans, not broken. Situations like this has arisen in the not-so-distant past; both New York teams drew heat when they moved into new ballparks, abandoning their much loved former homes.