ROSCOE VILLAGE — Construction on Kerry Wood Cubs Field — halted for more than a year following the discovery of contaminated soil — will resume thanks to a $2 million infusion of state funds to clean up the site, Gov. Pat Quinn announced Friday.
Ground was broken on the baseball field — located at 3457 N. Rockwell St. just behind Lane Tech — in October of 2012. The planned $5 million, 1,100-seat stadium would be the first on the city's North Side to meet Illinois High School Association standards, making it eligible to host statewide tournaments.
Originally set to open in spring 2013, the ball park has been on hold awaiting the results of a soil investigation and the formation of a remediation plan. The seven-acre property is situated on a former brick yard, which caused the contamination, according to a news release issued by the governor's office.
"The contamination is limited to the site and there are no safety issues for the surrounding area," the news release stated.
The state's $2 million, administered through the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, will fund the cleanup as well as site grading and leveling.
“This investment will kick-start this important project to turn an old industrial site into a state-of-the-art sports center for youth and families throughout the city," Quinn said in a statement.
Once complete, Kerry Wood Cubs Field will be run by the Chicago Park District. It will serve the city's public high schools and be available to recreational leagues and the general public.
The ball park is being financed through contributions from the Chicago Cubs, Chicago Cubs Charities, Wood Family Foundation, the City of Chicago, Chicago Park District, Chicago Public Schools and Turner Construction.
The Cubs and Wrigley Field are 95 percent owned by a trust established for the benefit of the family of Joe Ricketts, owner and CEO of DNAinfo.com. Joe Ricketts has no direct involvement in the management of the iconic team.