Home » Articles » White Sox release statement as Jerry Reinsdorf meets with state leaders over new stadium

White Sox release statement as Jerry Reinsdorf meets with state leaders over new stadium

by Joe Binder

The White Sox’s quest for a new stadium in the South Loop continues to ramp up.

The team’s chairman Jerry Reinsdorf visited Springfield on Tuesday to request $1 billion in public funding from state leaders for a ballpark at “The 78” location. NBC’s Mary Ann Ahern provided the below update as Reinsdorf made his arrival.

In response to today’s developments, the White Sox released the following statement.

“We recognize discussions about The 78 serving as the future home of the Chicago White Sox have generated a lot of excitement over the potential of the larger project’s positive economic impact. We are mindful and respectful of the legislative process and wanted to travel to Springfield to meet personally with legislative leaders. We’re excited to share our vision, and we appreciate their time and hospitality.”

A spokesperson for Related Midwest also provided the below statement:

“We appreciated the time afforded to us by lawmakers in Springfield today. As we shared in the meetings, The 78 is a generational development and an investment in our hometown. It’s personal to us and we are excited about the prospect of delivering the city’s next great neighborhood, while making an historic economic investment that will bring over 10,000 construction jobs and 22,000 permanent jobs to our city and state. The long-term impact will be transformative, creating a new riverfront neighborhood anchored by a state-of-the-art ballpark for generations of fans to enjoy and help enhance Chicago’s place as a top destination.”

Crain’s Chicago Business were the first to report that the White Sox and Reinsdorf were preparing to ask for $1 billion in public funding from Governor J.B. Pritzker the state of Illinois. The team’s chairman was reportedly confident in their chances ahead of meeting with state leaders.

“The two (Reinsdorf and Related Midwest President Curt Bailey) are bullish they can win state support by arguing the stadium subsidies will bring along billions more in private investment, and the deal is structured in a way to not require new or increased taxes,” the report states.

According to their article, Reinsdorf and the White Sox reportedly hope to extend the 2% hotel occupancy fee for decades more as part of this plan. The continuation of the existing tax, which is meant to pay the Illinois Sports Facilities Authority’s annual debt service for their bonds towards the White Sox’ stadium and the Bears’ renovations to Soldier Field, would stretch beyond 2034 – when outstanding bonds are meant to be paid.

The current South Loop stadium plan puts the new ballpark in the center of the action, with a Petco Park-esque vibe among the renderings. The ballpark would lay right along the river and would ensure a skyline background. It would also be part of a larger “ballpark village” that is reminiscent of what the Braves and Cardinals currently have.

We also receive more concrete information about the financial impact of these plans. The economic impact is expected to be as follows:

  • $9 billion economic investment in Chicago
  • $4 billion stabilized annual economic impact
  • $200 million annual stabilized tax revenue
  • 10,000+ construction jobs
  • 22,000+ permanent jobs

Rumors of Arlington Heights, the United Center, and even Nashville sprung up before the latest talks of a South Loop Stadium at “The 78” earlier this offseason. Things have moved quickly from there, with renderings and the proposal proving this is far from just an unsubstantiated idea. Recently, Rob Manfred and the Chicago Federation of Labor expressed their support for this new stadium plan, and former NBC Sports Chicago member and current ESPN radio host David Kaplan went so far as to say the White Sox’s new South Loop stadium was ” basically a done deal.”

As a reminder, the White Sox’s current lease for Guaranteed Rate Field does not end until after the 2028 season, but there would still be plenty of work necessary to get a stadium ready by 2029. Things are far from a sure thing here, so it will be interesting to see how things play out in the coming weeks and months.

For more updates, follow us on social media @SoxOn35th!

Featured Photo: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

Notify of

1 Comment
Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Make Ebenezer Reinsdorf stick a crowbar in his wallet and pay for the stadium himself. Not a dime of public money should be given to that parasite Reinsdorf.

You may also like