The rooftop bleacher and party decks on Waveland and Sheffield Avenues will soon be a thing of the past. Wrigleyville rooftop owners today announced their decision to dismantle their viewing structures, citing financial losses and lack of fan interest.
“We just couldn’t stay competitive,” said Gus Ferguson, president and CEO of the “Wrigley Rooftop Association” that controls properties on Sheffield Avenue. “Group sales have been disappointing. We’re just not taking in enough revenue to keep the grills fired up and the kegs tapped. No one wants to see this team, even drunk.”
Most of the properties will dismantle their rooftop amenities and revert to the rental units they were before the 1990s building bubble. The bleacher structures, grill stations, and party rooms will be scrapped in favor of the traditional tar-paper slanted roofs of a typical Chicago three-flat. Many of the apartments have already been granted “Section 8” rent-subsidy eligibility, which will enable a return of the area’s former majority population of single old men subsisting on disability payments.
Apartments will be ready to rent as soon as restorations are completed to “get rid of that frat-boy smell,” says Ferguson. Folding lawn chairs will be available for anyone willing to take in a day-game.
The 2004 revenue-sharing agreement between the Chicago Cubs and their “official rooftop partners” will also be rescinded. New terms are being negotiated to include a per diem payment from the Cubs to the property owners for every home game when a resident does not spit or urinate over the ledge or is not captured on television sleeping on a rooftop in his underwear.
By Cary Nathenson