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What to Expect From Wild Card Night In Wrigleyville: Plastic Cups, Police

By Ariel Cheung | October 6, 2015 4:39pm
 Public officials are hoping to keep Wrigleyville streets safe on Wednesday, when the Cubs will play in a one-game Wild Card series in Pittsburgh. Plans are similar to those in place during the Blackhawks festivities in June.
Public officials are hoping to keep Wrigleyville streets safe on Wednesday, when the Cubs will play in a one-game Wild Card series in Pittsburgh. Plans are similar to those in place during the Blackhawks festivities in June.
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Getty Images/ Jon Durr

WRIGLEYVILLE — While the Cubs will be on the road Wednesday battling in a one-game Wild Card showdown, the City of Chicago is still planning ahead for raucous celebrations in Wrigleyville.

Bars and restaurants will have added security and police could close streets near Wrigley Field "at their discretion depending on the crowds," Ald. Tom Tunney (44th) said Tuesday.

There will be a "greater presence" of police around the ballpark during both home and away games during the postseason, said Bennett Lawson, Tunney's chief of staff.

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Police are asking groceries and packaged good stores to end sales at 10 p.m. on Wednesday and potential future games that could decide a series. Delivery trucks will be banned from the area two hours before each game, as well.

Other than possible street closures after the game — most likely along the strip on Clark Street from Newport to Addison — no additional parking restrictions or street closures are planned.

Bars will be serving drinks in plastic cups to avoid shattered glass or projectiles thrown at people, and the fire department will check for overcrowding, occupancy violations and fire exit clearance.

Wrigleyville was a hot place to celebrate the Blackhawks' titles. (Getty Images/Jon Durr)

Tunney said extra clean-up and garbage pick-up will be scheduled during the playoffs.

Tunney met with the Cubs, police, fire, businesses and the Department of Business Affairs on Monday to discuss strategy.

The group has met regularly and spent the summer fine-tuning responses to huge Wrigleyville crowds during the Blackhawks festivities, the Pride Parade and summer concerts at Wrigley Field.

In general, blocking off Clark Street and allowing Blackhawks fans to slowly disperse from the bars was deemed a success and mirrored following the AC/DC concert in September.

While Tunney and police have suggested chambers of commerce hire private security to fill the gap left by Chicago police, Central Lake View Merchants and the Lakeview Chamber of Commerce have no plans to do so this season.

The Northalsted Business Alliance — which has hired security for the past several years — will wait until after Wednesday to decide whether it will retain the guards for the postseason, said Executive Director Christopher Barrett Politan.

The Lakeview East Chamber of Commerce has a security firm on call for Wednesday in case celebratory Cubs fans threaten to shake up the area east of North Halsted.

The chamber will re-evaluating after Wednesday's game, which is probably when it will "be looking at needing extra help, not only from private security, but the city," Executive Director Maureen Martino said.

The Cubs will not provide security at Wrigley Field for away games, said spokesman Julian Green. While the Cubs considered screening the Wild Card game on video boards, the plans were scrapped last week.

Wrigleyville was a hot place to celebrate the Blackhawks' titles. (Getty Images/Jon Durr)

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