BREAKING NEWS: Evanston City Council votes to move forward with Ryan Field rebuild. Full story here
EVANSTON, Ill. — Evanston may finally decide on the future of Northwestern’s Ryan Field Monday night.
A special meeting of the Evanston City Council was held Monday for an all important vote of the redesign of Ryan Field.
Northwestern University wants to rebuild their almost century old football stadium, Ryan Field, which would cost an estimated $800 million.
The university also want to host six concerts a year and other events at the new venue, which would require to be rezoned. But, a lot of people in the area are not on board the plan after citing problems such as noise and traffic congestion.
To get the greenlight, Northwestern has put forth a package of concessions originally valued at around $100 million over 10 years. But, the university dug a little deeper and made a new offer last week now worth about $175 million to the city over 15 years.
Some of those concessions include things like payments of $3 million annually to the “good neighbor fund” to further projects of interest to the school and the city, a half a million a year commitment toward racial equity programming and 2 million annually toward financial aid for Evanston high schoolers hoping to attend northwestern.
Monday night’s vote on the rezone was meant to happen last week, but the council decided to table it, saying they wanted more time to review the amended proposal from Northwestern.
The city essentially signed off of the benefits package proposed by the university Monday night with one amendment in there to potentially tweak some language and further protect the city going forward.
The vote to pass that benefits package was tied at 4–4 with the mayor breaking it.
Still no decision on what exactly is going on with the potential rebuild and rezoning of the land on which Ryan Field sits.
The rezone issue still remains undecided as Northwestern has previously said they won’t move forward with the project without the rezone.
Monday’s meeting began at 5:30 p.m. As of 10:15 p.m., the meeting was still going on.
To watch the Evanston City Council meeting, click here.