Finally! A place to drink near Wrigley Field!
Wrigleyville took stock Thursday of a new, year-round sports bar that will spill out of Wrigley Field and be open by the Cubs’ first home game April 13.
Without much fanfare, renovations have been completed at what had been the Friendly Confines Cafe inside the ballpark. The new sports bar, to be run by Harry Caray’s, will include that indoor space as well as a 7,000-square-foot patio featuring a 2,600-square-foot pavilion.
The year-round facility near the cobblestoned corner of Sheffield and Addison will increase commerce in a neighborhood already contending with 81 Cubs home games, playoffs the last two seasons, three night-time concerts in a single week this summer, a proposed hotel complex across the street and even a hockey game in January.
“The congestion,” exclaimed Wrigleyville resident Kurt Govertsen as he stood across the street and watched construction. “My gut reaction was, ‘God, it’s one more thing.’ “
This Govertsen fella is the only one complaining in the article. He goes on:
When there are night games, Govertsen said, it takes him 90 minutes to drive home from downtown. On concert nights last summer, Govertsen said he stayed in a hotel near his office.
One more sports bar next to so many others likely won’t change the area much, he said. But the 12-year resident of the neighborhood wondered if this might be the thing that drove him to move.
“The traffic keeps getting worse and worse,” Govertsen said, as concrete construction saws whistled across Addison.
“This might put me over the edge.”
Let’s see: Govertsen is a “twelve year resident” of the neighborhood, the night games are what bothers him, and the night games started there in 1988. I’ll grant him that the concerts may be a bit much, but he should have known what he was in for when he moved in so my sympathy for his evening drive home is limited. And that’s even before taking into account that he works and lives in neighborhoods served by a subway. I mean really: don’t people who live in Wrigleyville and work downtown take the El? If not, why not?