South Side Cubs? Tinley Park makes pitch to lure team
By Phil Kadner Sun-Times Media June 26, 2013 12:10AM
Updated: June 26, 2013 12:36AM
Tinley Park wants Chicago’s North Side baseball team to consider a new home across enemy lines in White Sox country — the south suburbs.
In a letter to Chicago Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts, Tinley Park Mayor Ed Zabrocki notes the team’s troubled ongoing negotiations with Chicago to redevelop Wrigley Field and offers 250 acres of land in his southwest suburb for a new home.
“I understand that other communities may have already reached out to you,” Zabrocki wrote Ricketts, “but I ask that you consider this as a legitimate option and an opportunity to expand the Chicago Cubs horizon to a south side audience as well.
“The property formerly housed a state mental health center which is no longer in use, and I have it on good authority that the property will soon be made available to other State agencies,” Zabrocki wrote.
“In the event that none are interested in the property, the Village of Tinley Park will have the opportunity to purchase it from the State.”
Zabrocki notes that the property, near 183rd Street and Harlem Avenue, is near the 80th Avenue Metra Station, adjacent to Interstate 80, close to I-355 and I-294, has sufficient acreage for parking and “potential development including hotels, restaurants, and commercial/retail.”
The Village of Rosemont had previously made an offer to the Cubs to relocate to the northwest suburbs.
The Cubs are in protracted negotiations with the City of Chicago over plans to remodel Wrigley Field, a historic landmark, and develop the surrounding neighborhood.