After years of swinging and missing the Cubs finally have the go-ahead to proceed with their five-year plan to rebuild 99-year-old Wrigley Field and develop the land around it.

The City Council on Wednesday unanimously signed off on the $500 million development primarily bankrolled by a 5700-square-foot video scoreboard in left field and a 650-square-foot see-through sign in right.

Local Ald. Tom Tunney (44th) opened the debate talking about the “trying” months he has spent negotiating the fine points of the “framework” agreement that Emanuel and Ricketts hammered out in April.

Most major league stadiums are on campuses of 30 acres or more the alderman said. Wrigley Field is “so different than most other if not all” other ballparks because it’s cramped on 3.5 acres of land.

“I remember a general manager named Dallas Green who said `This place is a dump’ in 1983 Tunney said recalling how the community around Wrigley has grown while the stadium got older.

“Other than the lights being installed there was very little done [by the Cubs] at Clark and Addison.”

Tunney said his neighborhood is not “afraid of change.” Wrigleyville “welcomes” the change that will come with a $500 million investment.

But he said “The balance that I’ve been trying to negotiate has been exhilarating upsetting exciting exasperating” he said. “I care too much and I know too much about my community.”

He added “This is a big day for the city of Chicago. ... Just make sure the Cubs do what they say they’re gonna do. No more head fakes because if they do a head fake” the City Council and the mayor must and will hold the team accountable.

Although difficult negotiations remain between the Cubs and rooftop club owners Wednesday’s vote paves the way for Mayor Rahm Emanuel to do what he likes to do most: chalk up an economic development “win” that will create 2100 jobs and generate $50 million in state and federal tax revenue.

It was a hard-fought victory.

Until an ill-timed controversy over the conservative politics of Joe Ricketts the patriarch of the billionaire family that owns the Cubs team owner Tom Ricketts was still hoping to use 35 years’ worth of amusement tax growth to help finance a $300 million renovation of Wrigley Field.

After months in Emanuel’s doghouse Ricketts abruptly ended his multi-year quest for a public subsidy.

He offered to go it alone — and build a $200 million hotel development on the McDonald’s property he purchased across the street from the stadium — provided the city lift restrictions on outfield signs and night games and opens Sheffield for street fairs on game days.

With support from Tunney rooftop club owners who share 17 percent of their revenues with the team responded by pitching their plan to generate $17.9 million a year to bankroll the stadium renovation — by putting seven digital signs on top of their buildings instead of inside the ballpark blocking their views.

But they struck out with the Cubs who argue that there’s far more money to be made by putting up signs inside the ballpark that can be seen during television broadcasts of Cubs games.

All of that was forgotten in the glow of Wednesday’s vote which paves the way for the Cubs to begin construction as soon as the regular season ends.

Tunney had threatened a floor fight if his demands weren’t met and he spent weeks lobbying his City Council colleagues to preserve aldermanic privilege the longstanding tradition of deferring to the local aldermen on zoning and development issues.

On Wednesday Tunney told his colleagues he wasn’t looking for a “civil war” with the Cubs. But they had better honor their commitments to local residents if they want to avoid one.

“What is the adage? You have to be a good neighbor. Otherwise I’ll be up your butt every day and I’ll be up the Ricketts’ butt every day” with the help of the mayor and City Council Tunney said.

“If you need my help I will be there for you because you know you will be there for me.”

Emanuel closed the debate by praising Tunney as a “tireless advocate” for his constituents.

“There are 44 changes that he had sought” the mayor said.

“I happen to think we struck the perfect balance. I do think we did exactly right by balancing those interests.”

The mayor closed by underscoring the point he wants all Chicago taxpayers to remember: “There’s not one single taxpayer dollar going to back this up. It took a while for that to sink in and for people to accept it.”

The project includes a historic makeover of the 99-year-old ballpark that will begin with spacious new clubhouses and training facilities and include new concourses washrooms concessions and restoration of Wrigley’s historic exterior.

It includes a 175-room hotel with a 40000-square-foot health club 74 parking spaces advertising on two sides and a crown rising 117 feet above ground a six-story office building with advertising on the south and west faces and a clock tower rising to a height of 117 feet an open-air plaza with seven ad-bearing steel towers and a four-screen digital advertising board that would be turned off between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. and a pedestrian bridge connecting the hotel and plaza.

There would be 35000 square feet of ads between the hotel plaza and Captain Morgan Club.

During marathon hearings before the Plan Commission the Commission on Chicago Landmarks and the City Council’s Zoning Committee the Cubs’ presentation was made by architect Michael Toolis the co-owner of VOA Associates who just happens to be the husband of Emanuel’s former chief of staff Theresa Mintle. That only heightened the suspicions for local residents.

Earlier this week the final pieces of the deal fell into place.

After yet another meeting with Tunney Emanuel announced that the controversial pedestrian bridge over Clark Street would be “deferred indefinitely” and that there would be “further discussion” on the location of a hotel entrance that Tunney wants moved off residential Patterson Avenue.