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Cubs, city officials to meet again on Wrigley plan

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PITTSBURGH -- Can the Cubs install a video scoreboard inside Wrigley Field? That appears to be one of the sticking points in negotiations between the team, city officials and the Wrigleyville rooftop owners.

Officials with the Cubs, the city of Chicago and the Wrigleyville neighborhood were expected to continue talks on Tuesday regarding the team's proposed $300 million renovation plan of Wrigley Field.

Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts proposed the five-year plan in January, and wants to begin this offseason with renovation of the home clubhouse. But the Cubs want assurances from the city that they can play more night games and install a video scoreboard, among other things, which would generate more revenue.

Ricketts had set Opening Day as a deadline but no resolution has been reached. Mike Lufrano, Cubs executive vice president of community affairs and legal counsel, met Monday with top mayoral aide Matt Hynes and Wrigleyville Ald. Tom Tunney of the 44th Ward at Mayor Rahm Emanuel's City Hall office.

Part of the Cubs' plan includes installing a 6,000-square-foot video screen inside the ballpark. But rooftop club owners want to preserve their views and believe the screen would block them.

According to reports, the rooftop owners are willing to put signs on their buildings and let the Ricketts keep the revenue, and they want to extend their current agreement with the Cubs.

"There's good progress made to both to allow the Cubs owners to make the investments they need in the stadium," Emanuel said during a news conference in Chicago, "and there's good progress also to make sure the community around Wrigley ... sees the type of parking and security they need for games to also enjoy the community."

Besides the money the Ricketts have proposed spending on Wrigley Field's renovation, they also want to spend another $200 million on a hotel and other developments in the surrounding Wrigleyville area.

Theo Epstein, Cubs president of baseball operations, said the renovations are key to the team's future.

"I think it's fundamentally important to get us to the next level as an organization," Epstein said. "We have a baseball plan and a business plan and they're timed to sync up with one another -- they're interdependent.

"If we don't get our Wrigley renovation done in a timely manner and done in the right way, then we can't accomplish our business objectives and it will certainly get in the way of us ultimately accomplshing our baseball objectives," Epstein said. "It's very important."

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

{"event":["opening_day" ] }
{"event":["opening_day" ] }
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