Baseball / Sports

Cubs' neighbors won't sue if team sticks to two signs at Wrigley

CHICAGO -- The rooftop owners surrounding Wrigley Field have agreed not to sue the Chicago Cubs if the team sticks to last year's plan to install just two advertising signs in the outfield, two owners said.

The rooftop owners reached out to the Cubs with the offer in recent weeks to settle their long-running dispute. The Cubs have not responded to the proposal, said Jim Lourgos, a rooftop owner.

"The rooftops have been working very hard to find a solution that works for everyone," Lourgos said. "I haven't heard from the Cubs yet."

A spokesman for the Cubs did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

George Loukas, another rooftop owner, confirmed that the owners have agreed among themselves not to pursue litigation against the Cubs over a potential violation of their 20-year contract with the team. The owners have contended that the contract prevents the Cubs from installing the two signs that the city approved, and threatened to go to court to protect their rights. The two signs are a video scoreboard in left field and an electronic sign in right field.

"I'm agreeing to work with my rooftop associates," Loukas said. "Personally, you know, if I was by myself I would let the judicial system take care of it. But because I want to be part of the team and I'm a team player, this is going to be for the good of the other rooftops as well as the Cubs."

The rooftops' offer came after Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts declared in May an impasse in negotiations with rooftops. He also upped in the ante in his bitter dispute with them. Ricketts unveiled a new stadium renovation plan that included seven outfield signs, five more than the City of Chicago approved last year. The additional signage would have blocked more views from the rooftops and potentially ruined their businesses.

Any additional signs have to be approved by the city because 100-year-old Wrigley Field is a Chicago landmark. The Chicago Commission on Landmarks is set to review the Cubs' proposal for seven signs on July 10.

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