In a new letter, the city of Chicago has made a detailed list of security improvements that require the “prompt attention” of the Chicago Cubs.
The Cubs, who have been busy renovating Wrigley Field, have implemented a slew of new security measures at the Friendly Confines, and while the city says that those measures have gotten the season off to a “safe and successful” start, they listed six areas that the Cubs need to show improvement in.
The first area mentioned in the letter, which was sent to NBC 5 on Thursday, was to present the city with a Security Barrier Plan. The plan for the barriers, which would be placed along an expanded sidewalk along Addison between Sheffield and Clark on the south side of the ballpark, has not been submitted by the Cubs, according to the city’s letter.
The city also stated in the letter that the Cubs did not immediately report the recent death of a fan who fell over a railing at the stadium in May, and stated that the organization should be “required to notify CPD of any serious injury occurring on their property.”
The city also requested that the Cubs submit a security plan for the new “Park at Wrigley” that has been constructed along the west side of the stadium, continue to integrate the Wrigley Field camera system with OEMC, and to upgrade public safety radio communications at the Joint Operations Center during Cubs games, among other changes.
In response, the Cubs issued a statement of their own, saying that the “safety and security of our fans and the Wrigleyville neighborhood is one of our top priorities.”
“In the past year alone, we have committed more than $1 million to expand OEMC’s camera network, invested millions of dollars into additional security personnel, provided canines and metal detection screening capabilities and added off-hours security on the streets of Lakeview,” the Cubs’ statement read.
The discussions about security surrounding the ballpark have been going on since the Cubs first announced their plans for massive renovations of the surrounding area, which included the newly-constructed plaza, a parking garage, and a hotel across the street from the iconic stadium.
Requests by the Cubs to close down streets around the ballpark during games have been denied by the city, and the Cubs did reiterate their request in their response to the letter Thursday.
"In contrast to Chicago, the City of Boston, of its own accord and without the Red Sox urging, this year closed streets around historic Fenway Park before, during and after Red Sox games," the Cubs said.
The city issued its own response to the Cubs' comments about street closures.
"Public safety officials have always exercised the ability to close Clark and Addison when it's deemed necssary, and they routinely do so when the sidewalks become crowded," the city said in a statement to NBC 5. "In fact, the streets were closed during the series against the Cardinals last weekend at the direction of city security officials."