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Opening Day for the Bud Light Bleachers

By Benjy Lipsman in News on Apr 7, 2006 4:57PM

Chicagoist knows Cubs fans don't actually go to Wrigley Field to watch baseball. It's about drinking beer and checking out Trixie and Chad. It's about soaking up the rays and admiring the "friendly confines." With game attendance more about the stadium experience than the team on the field, everybody is focusing on the debut of the revamped Wrigley Field as the Cubs open their home schedule today.

The Trib's architecture critic, Blair Kamin, takes a break from analyzing the glistening, starchitect towers to weigh in on Wrigley Field's updates.

The new bleachers are a model of elegant evolution, one that allows the grand dame of American ballparks to step into the 21st Century without descending to the preciousness of its countless retro ballpark imitators.

Of course, Kamin's paycheck comes from the owners of Wrigley Field...

The Sun-Times also weighs in on the bleacher expansion, but focuses more on the adverse affects to the views of the surrounding buildings. While the bleacher expansion doesn't block the views too badly, and the city approved zoning to allow the rooftop buildings to build higher, 8 speaker poles that weren't in the plans but somehow sprouted up during construction have caused some rooftop owners to express displeasure.

Also, according to the Sun-Times article, the Cubs have begun referring to the park and it's surroundings as the Wrigley Field Campus. Guess it's fitting, given that the bleacher scene typically resembles a fraternity-sorority mixer. Will Chad soon be sporting BLB in 6 inch letters across his chest? Is it only a matter of time before the rooftops add greek letters to their facades? And what kind of hazing can poor Cubs rookies expect? At least nobody has to worry about Dean Baker putting anybody on double-secret probation.