(CBS) The Ricketts family, owner of the Cubs, has purchased three more rooftops across from Wrigley Field.
The move is another win for the Cubs in their protracted and ongoing battle with the rooftop owners that stems from the organization renovating Wrigley Field and putting up two large video boards, as well as additional signage, that block views from some of the rooftops that have turned into a cash cow. The rooftop owners have contended that they’ll go out of business because of that.
The Cubs confirmed the purchases Thursday afternoon after the Tribune had first reported it.
“The Ricketts family has said in the past they are interested in reasonable opportunities to purchase rooftop property and are willing to pay a fair price,” the Cubs said in a statement. “In this case, we were able to acquire three buildings. The rooftop situation has been a political and legal morass for more than a decade and the Ricketts family will remain interested in opportunities which make sound business sense.”
These purchases by the Ricketts family will give the Cubs further control over where and how their fan base can consume their product. The Cubs are in the first year of renovations on and around Wrigley Field that are expected to be completed before the 2019 season begins.
There are more than a dozen rooftop businesses along Waveland and Sheffield avenues, and the Ricketts family now owns six of those buildings after one of their entities purchased three buildings on Sheffield Avenue from Sheffield Finance, the Tribune reported.
Jerry Lasky, one of the owners of Sheffield Finance, told the Tribune that the Cubs were the only potential buyer he had and that it was easy to deal with the franchise’s leaders.
A lawsuit brought forth by rooftops businesses Skybox on Sheffield and Lakeview Baseball Club against the Cubs is still pending, according to the Tribune.