On Wednesday morning, the Bulls announced future plans to move from their current practice facility, the Sheri L. Berto Center in suburban Deerfield, to a downtown Chicago location.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel reportedly pitched the idea, which was first reported by the Chicago Tribune last month, to Bulls chairman Jerry Reinsdorf recently.
Mayor Emanuel has done a tremendous job promoting investment in the City of Chicago, said Reinsdorf. The Mayor stressed that the Bulls brand is important to the city, nationally and internationally, and that the Bulls represent the spirit and competitive grit of Chicago. He thought centralizing our team assets inside the city limits would be a show of our ongoing commitment to Chicago. We have been contemplating how to address the growth limitations of our practice facility for awhile, so the Mayors timing and ours seems to make sense.
Added Michael Reinsdorf, the owner's son, as well as the Bulls' president and COO: We have been happy at the Berto for many years. However, for us, the time is right for a move from both a basketball and a business standpoint. Our basketball operations group has been incredibly resourceful, but there is no longer space available to grow where we are now. And, strategically, we are taking a more integrated approach to our business, and decreasing the physical distance between our two main facilities will naturally create more opportunities for collaboration among all departments."
The new facility would be privately funded and could also include additional features such as greater video and digital productions, and perhaps most importantly, would reduce commute times for most players.
A site for the new building hasn't been settled upon yet. The Bulls intend to sell the current practice facility.