WRIGLEY FIELD — The Chicago Cubs have picked a name for the plaza that will open adjacent to Wrigley Field next year: The Park at Wrigley Field.
But the 50,000-square-foot plaza will only have the moniker on a temporary basis — until naming rights get sold.
The Ricketts family, owners of the Cubs and Wrigley Field, will oversee the development through their Hickory Street Capital real estate firm, and selected WME IMG as its partner in creating year-round programs at The Park at Wrigley Field.
A key component of the plaza is a full schedule of community-focused events, like an ice skating rink, farmers market and family movie nights.
"As we look to bring world-class events and activities to the Park at Wrigley Field, we are excited to partner with one of the best sports and entertainment companies in the industry," said Crane Kenney, president of Hickory Street Capital and president of Cubs business operations.
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WME IMG will also lead the efforts to select a naming partner, who will get the naming rights next to Wrigley Field, one of few sports stadiums without a corporate branding deal attached to it.
Anchoring the plaza will be an office building, where the club will move its business operations in early 2017. At ground level, restaurants and retail will anchor the building. Already, One Off Hospitality has confirmed it will open a second Big Star on the plaza.
Other top Chicago restaurateurs like 4 Star Restaurant Group and Folkart Restaurant Management are expected to open in the space, as well.
The plaza is expected to open in 2017, with no plans to use it during the 2016 postseason.
While the restaurants inside can open outdoor patios, the plaza itself will operate under the city's plaza ordinance. The law, passed in June over the Cubs' objections, restricts alcohol use and access to the plaza.
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The Cubs said limiting the number of special events hosted on the plaza could hurt their ability to "operate the plaza as an unique asset that's accessible to the entire community."
The Hotel Zachary/Wrigley Plaza is being developed by an entity controlled by a trust established for the benefit of the family of Joe Ricketts, owner and CEO of DNAinfo. Joe Ricketts has no direct involvement in the management of the hotel development project.