Friday, December 31, 2021

2021 Business Counter: We have that a net 7 new businesses opened - did we miss any?

We haven't maintained our business tracker very well this year, but that doesn't mean we can't endeavor to get a count on the year.  We've scoured some of our posts as well as other neighborhood resources (Mr. South Loop, Hello South LoopPrairie District Neighborhood Alliance) and here is what we got:

Opened in 2021

  1. Luxury Medspa (2335 S. Michigan)
  2. Naf Naf Grill (1248 S. Canal)
  3. GeeFit (2127 S. Wabash)
  4. Shangs (1101 S. Wabash)
  5. Joffrey Ballet (1920 S. Wabash)
  6. The Now Massage (1109 S. Wabash)
  7. Williams Inn Pizza (2210 S. Michigan)
  8. Mustard Seed (49 E. Cermak)
  9. L'afrique Market (2001 S. State)
  10. GeeFit (2127 S. Wabash)
  11. Dollop Diner, Cafe & Bar (1210 S. Indiana)
  12. Smoke Valley (1319 S. Michigan)
  13. My Gym (1333 S. Wabash)
  14. Duneyrr Fermenta & Moderne Dune (2337 S. Michigan)
  15. Tea % (57 E. 11th)
  16. Bureau Pizza (719 S. State)
  17. Siam Rice (1906 S. State)
  18. CBD Kratom (643 W. Roosevelt)
  19. UChicago Med (47 W. Polk)
  20. Veterinary Emergency Group (1114 S. Clinton)
  21. Sweet Bean (1152 S. Wabash)
  22. Crab Bucket (2036 S. Michigan)
  23. GoGrocer (820 S. Michigan)
  24. Chicago Duplicate Bridget (47 W. Polk)
  25. Fit Results Chicago (731 S. Plymouth Ct)
  26. Mimi's Tacos & French Fries (1155 S. Jefferson)
  27. Lao Sze Chuan (616 S. Wabash)
  28. Apolonia Restaurant (2201 S. Michigan)
  29. Insomnia Cookies (30 E. Balbo)
  30. Banfield Pet Hospital (645 W. Roosevelt)
  31. JS Blossom Nail and Spa (719 S. State)

Closed in 2021

  1. Dearborn Denim (728 S. Dearborn)
  2. Cafe Bionda (1924 S. State)
  3. Spanglish Kitchen (555 S. State)
  4. Burger King (2328 S. Michigan)
  5. Acadia (1639 S. Wabash)
  6. Harbor (1312 S. Wabash)
  7. Kurah (1355 S. Michigan)
  8. Chef Luciano's (49 E. Cermak)
  9. Shred 451 (1136 S Delano Ct)
  10. Quench Wellness (1319 S. Michigan)
  11. Mercy Medical Center (47 W. Polk)
  12. Mei's Asian Small Plates (1101 S. Wabash)
  13. Caribbean Jerk Palace (733 S. Dearborn)
  14. Nice and Distressed (723 S. Dearborn)
  15. Opart Thai (1906 S. State)
  16. Pauly's Pizza (719 S. State)
  17. Teriyaki Madness (829 S. Wabash)
  18. Illinois Media School (530 S. State)
  19. Float Sixty (1143 S. State)
  20. Motor Row Brewing (2337 S. Michigan)
  21. South Loop Cleaners (1248 S. Canal)
  22. Tutto Italiano (501 S. Wells)
  23. Urban Grocers (747 S. State)

Thursday, December 30, 2021

Sloop's First Dispensary? Company Submits Applications for Cannabis Dispensary at 2114 S. Wabash

We've posted about rumors of a cannabis dispensary in the neighborhood, but not much has materialized.  That said, we recently saw this post on Prairie District Neighborhoods Alliance's Facebook Page and seems pretty legit:

Dear South Loop Neighbor,

On December 16, 2021, Green & Foster, LLC submitted a special use application to establish an adult use cannabis dispensary at 2114 S. Wabash Ave. Per City permitting rules, the applicant is only required to host one community meeting as part of the application process. Additionally, I want to remind you that I am unable to grant or deny the issuance of a special use permit for an adult use cannabis dispensary. I can only advocate on behalf of my residents as part of the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) process.

As your alderman, I am committed to ensuring that residents have their voice heard in the special use application process. I will be hosting my own community meeting in January 2022 to gather feedback from residents on the dispensary proposal. I will also submit an official statement to the Zoning Board of Appeals reflecting the wishes of residents should the application move forward and receive a hearing in the ZBA. And, as I do with all businesses in the neighborhood, I will work directly with the applicant to ensure their business operates in a manner that reflects the character and integrity of the community.

On that final point, I must express my disappointment that the applicant posted their community notice during the holidays when most people are focused on celebrating with their families. This is not the way we operate in the 3rd Ward and that will be made clear to the applicant.

ZBA Process for Cannabis Dispensaries

No special use application may be approved unless the Zoning Board of Appeals finds that the proposed use in its proposed location meets all of the following criteria:

1. complies with all applicable standards of this Zoning Ordinance;

2. is in the interest of the public convenience and will not have a significant adverse impact on the

general welfare of the neighborhood or community;

3. is compatible with the character of the surrounding area in terms of site planning and building scale and project design;

4. is compatible with the character of the surrounding area in terms of operating characteristics, such as hours of operation, outdoor lighting, noise, and traffic generation; and

5. is designed to promote pedestrian safety and comfort.

When the anticipated impacts of a special use are determined to have the potential for adverse impacts on surrounding property, the special use must be denied or conditions must be placed on the approval to ensure that any adverse impacts will be mitigated. The Zoning Administrator may recommend and the Zoning Board of Appeals may impose such conditions upon the site planning, design, location and operation of a special use.

ZBA Contact Information - Public testimony is the preferred method of public comment. Members of the public wishing to speak must join the Zoom meeting at the link provided on the ZBA website at 8:30 a.m. the day of the meeting. Written statements from members of the public will be accepted at until 5 p.m. the Monday before the meeting.

I look forward to working with you to properly vet this proposed special use application. Please feel free to reach out to me or my office on this, or any other issue, at or at 773-373-9273.

3rd Ward Alderman Pat Dowell

This appears to be the vacant retail space that once housed Tommy Gun's - the gangster themed tourist restaurant - that closed last year.  

Should be interesting to see how this process plays out. 

Tuesday, December 28, 2021

Dearborn Denim Closing Store at 728 S. Dearborn on 12/30

It looks like we have a closing in Printers Row (via Hello South Loop Facebook Page):


Dear Neighbors,

We are sad to share that we will be closing our store at 728 S Dearborn on Thursday, 12/30 at 6 pm.

We have loved being part of the Printer’s Row community for the last two years, and as South Loop residents ourselves, we are especially sad to say goodbye.

We are still open in Andersonville (5202 N Clark) and online (

Thank you for our support,

Katy and Rob

*Any gift cards purchased at this location are still valid both online and in Andersonville

We first posted about this shop opening in late 2019 and they officially open at probably the worst time possible - March 2020 - when the pandemic was just making its way to the states.

Anyway, sad to see this one go.  Dearborn Denim was a unique business in the Sloop - an independent clothing store.  We actually spoke to the owner recently and he mentioned the challenges with this location for a clothing store.  He summed it up as a challenging location since most consumers aren't going to this stretch of Dearborn to shop for clothes - essentially, this is not a destination area for shopping (it's more for food, drink and professional services).  

Monday, December 20, 2021

Buddy Guy Shares Stories with WGN and Talks Annual Residence at His South Loop Club

If you've never been to Buddy Guy's Legend at 700 S. Wabash you're missing out on a fun experience.  And it's an even bigger treat to see the namesake do his thing on stage (via WGNradio):

Buddy Guy, the iconic blues musician, joined Bob Sirott to talk about his annual January residency at his namesake South Loop club, Buddy Guy’s Legends. Buddy also shared stories about how he got started, his Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction, and what he wished he had said when he visited the White House. Later on, Bob asked Buddy for his thoughts on Chess Records, and potentially renovating the studio on south Michigan Avenue.

Buddy will perform Thursday’s through Sunday’s in January. For more information, and to buy tickets, go to BuddyGuy.Com


Tuesday, December 14, 2021

30-Story High-Rise on South Wabash Gets Partial Construction Permit

Looks like we have some movement at south Wabash (via

Last week, a partial construction permit was approved for a new 30-story mixed-use tower at 1400 S Wabash Avenue in South Loop. The site of the project has long sat vacant as a former parking lot, with one of Chicago YIMBY’s earliest articles speculating on the developer plans. Now set to stand 305 feet to the roof and 316 feet to pinnacle, the glassy new tower will have a significant impact on South Loop’s steadily-densifying skyline.

One little civic improvement looks like a small pocket park will be built to the north of the site:

Assuming all goes according to the plan, the building is somewhat more aesthetically pleasing than most buildings in the area:

Thursday, December 9, 2021

Long Challenged 1000M High-Rise Gets New Loan and Looks to Restart Construction

There has been some rumblings on the web about the stalled 1000M high-rise construction being resuscitated.  Looks like that's true (via

One of the late Helmut Jahn’s last designs may get built after all. Time Equities, JK Equities, and Oak Capitals have announced that the construction of 1000M is going to restart any day now. How is this possible? Money.

The development trio has closed on a $304 million construction loan, which will be used to get things moving again. It was last year that local media were talking about financing problems with this project, but as of today that all seems to have been resolved. Construction is scheduled to be completed in three years, so December 2024, which is adjacent to January, 2025.

This is a major project and not surprising it's been a challenge to get going.  We've been posting about this since to say it's been in the works for awhile is an understatement.  The development finally started to show signs of tangible progress, but then came Covid-19 and brought more uncertainty.

Over the last year there have been stories about pivots to the project and now this seems to be the most tangible piece of news that it's restarting.  Good luck to the developers - they clearly need some.

Tuesday, December 7, 2021

If a Street Pole Falls On an Empty Chicago Street, Does it Make a Sound?

Apparently yes!

Some hard hitting South Loop news from CBS2:

The windy weather Monday was partially to blame for a traffic pole coming crashing down right outside a school in the South Loop.

A closer look revealed that the base of the pole was completely covered in rust.

City crews were seen working late Monday to replace the busted pole and traffic light outside Daystar Academy at 16th and State streets.

Thursday, December 2, 2021

City to Hold Public Presentation on 12/16 for Chicago Casino Proposals

We've been eating up all the coverage of the potential Chicago casino since there is a pretty chance it's going to be in our neck of the woods.  With that said, it looks like the public meetings are going to be starting soon (via

Public Presentations

The bidders of the five Chicago casino proposals will give public presentations on December 16, 2021.

This event will be held from 1pm to 8pm at the Isadore and Sadie Dorin Theater at UIC (725 W Roosevelt Rd, Chicago, IL, 60608) and will be held in person as well as livestreamed.

If you are interested in attending this event in person, please fill out this form. Attendance will be limited due to Covid, more details to follow.

Not sure if this is a forum for Q&A, but we would hope so.  A 7 hour meeting is pretty intense for the common Joe, so curious to see what comes of this.

(Hat tip:  PB!)

Monday, November 29, 2021

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Sun-Times: Two Sloop Locations Frontrunners for Downtown Chicago Casino

More chatter on the casino and the money looks to be on two Sloop sights (via Sun-Times):

some insiders believe the casino competition boils down to Neil Bluhm versus Neil Bluhm.

The head of Chicago-based Rush Street Gaming and owner of the lucrative Rivers Casino in Des Plaines, Bluhm is behind two proposals, either of which could benefit from few complications and a quick start. With the firm Related Midwest, Bluhm wants a casino on vacant acreage in the development site known as The 78, running southwest from Roosevelt and Clark.

It’s close to downtown, and the land is shovel-ready. But Bluhm has hedged his bets, offering on his own a casino plan for the existing Lakeside Center at McCormick Place, the oldest building at the convention complex and the one least utilized. It’s got parking already there and vast floors ready for slots and table games.

We're pretty cold on the 78 location as it would dramatically change the profile of the Sloop as this land is poised to become a critical, central component of the neighborhood.  

That said, the renderings of the 78 casino does look pretty striking and it has a crazy high tower:

For anyone looking for architectural flourishes, the biggest offering is at The 78. The plan includes a 1,000-foot observation tower—its rendering makes it look like a giant circular staircase. It’s almost as tall as 875 North Michigan, the former John Hancock Center.

As part of its entertainment component, the plan promises to re-create Mister Kelly’s, the storied Rush Street nightclub that was a stopover for musicians and comedians traveling from coast to coast. It closed in 1975.


Monday, November 15, 2021

Xpot at Roosevelt Collection Simply Looks Amazing and Out of this World

Xpot in Roosevelt Collection has been open for a couple weeks now and the yelp reviews and pictures seem spectacular.  We haven't been yet, but just take a look at some of these instagram posts:

Wow - just wow!  Can't wait to try this place out...has anyone been yet?

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

4 out of the 5 Casino Location Proposals In or Close to the Sloop

Last week we posted about 5 casino sites that were proposed for the city and numerous ones in the Sloop. Well it ends up that 4 of the 5 are in the neighborhood!  We're not huge bettors, but those seem like pretty good odds that there is going to be a casino in the neighborhood.  The question now is where?

The four locations in (or very close) to the Sloop are:

  • Bally’s Chicago — McCormick Place Truck Marshaling Yard
  • Hard Rock at the One Central Development (west of Solder Field)
  • Rivers Chicago at McCormick
  • Rivers 78 Gaming
Each of these proposals have many pros/cons.  First off, the Bally's proposal is south of what we would consider the Sloop, but it's still pretty close.  Out of these 4 proposals, we would imagine our neighborhood would be most supportive of this one since it's just outside our boundaries.  According to the Tribune, the alderman representing this ward has been pretty adamant that she doesn't support this location - so we will see if that's a deal breaker.

While One Central is the development that won't go away and a casino at this location probably gives it a shot in the arm...we still think it's a long shot (and years away from ever potentially happening).  

Rivers Chicago at McCormick
So that leaves us with the Rivers proposals.  In our opinion, the Rivers Chicago at McCormick is very interesting on many fronts.  The Tribune explains it as:
The proposal to redevelop Lakeside Center — formerly the East Building — at McCormick Place would have a number of built-in advantages, according to Scott Goodman, founding principal of Chicago-based Farpoint Development.

“We think this is a perfect adjunct to what’s already there,” Goodman said. “Things are already in place, not least of which is the structure, but also other infrastructure, such as parking and access, and ways for people to get there.”

The seldom-used, 50-year-old Lakeside Center has 583,000 square feet of exhibit space, but is dwarfed by the newer McCormick Place West Building, which opened in 2007. It is adjacent to an abundance of hotel rooms, has lakefront vistas, is designed for high-traffic events and in a post-COVID-19 world, could help draw conventions and conventioneers to roll the dice on Chicago, Goodman said.

The plan would create casino floor up to 300,000 square feet, with the rest of the exhibit floor filled with food and beverage options, as well as entertainment spaces, Goodman said. The redevelopment would also address maintenance issues and capital improvement needs that have been “compiling” at the building, he said.

The adaptive reuse of an existing convention hall may have one significant advantage over competing proposals with new buildings — an expedited timeline.

It's a pretty iconic location right on the lake, it's a re-use of an underutilized building and it's connected to McCormick Place (which some say is a problem).  Those are pretty big assets from our vantage point.

Rivers 78
The 78 certainly has the space and nice river location for a casino, but in our opinion this spot would be a tough pill to swallow for the Sloop.  This is in the heart of the Sloop and would change they dynamics of the neighborhood in a major way.  Sure the 78 was going to do that regardless, but add a casino and we just don't know...seems like a bad move.

Details are pretty limited on this proposal, but the developer Related Midwest did say:
Related Midwest President Curt Bailey offered few details but plenty of enthusiasm about the plan, saying it “would work extremely well and probably produce the highest-income casino in the city of Chicago because of the location.”

Of course that's what he was going to stay, but might have some truth.  It is a good location.

This will be interesting to monitor.  Certainly the site at the Chicago Tribune Publishing Center is a good location, but in our opinion not as good as some of the Sloop spots.  


Monday, November 8, 2021

Spanglish Has Eviction Sign on Door and Looks to be Closed as Retail Space is For Lease

 It looks like Spanglish (555 S. State) might be closed and not reopening:

There’s an eviction notice on the window of Spanglish Mexican Kitchen (State St. between Congress and Harrison).

Regarding the reopening, Mr. South Loop posted that the retail space is up for lease, so all sign point to the being the end of Spanglish (at least at this location).

We liked Spanglish, but it was never a go-to taco spot for us.  For those who are curious, Spanglish opened back in 2013, so has had a nice 8 year run.

(Hat tip:  AB!)

Wednesday, November 3, 2021

New Brunch Spot - The Southern Chicago - Signs Lease at 2000 S. Wabash

 Looks like the southern part of the Sloop is getting a new brunch spot:

The stretch of Wabash south of 18th has been pretty barren for awhile.  For long time Sloopers you may remember Cuatro and Room 21 brought some energy, but those both closed over 10 years ago - wow!  

Who remembers The Shrine on Wabash?  That hosted some big names and provided a trendy hip-hope vibe to Wabash.  That also closed about 5 years ago.

Anyway - interested to try out The Southern and welcome to the Sloop.

Monday, November 1, 2021

5 Sites Proposed for Casino in Chicago, Including Numerous Locations Close to the Sloop

It looks like a Casino in (or very close) to the Sloop is a good bet (via Chicago Tribune):

Developers submitted five proposals to operate casinos in Chicago, bringing the city one step closer to a potential big revenue boost and achieving a goal that has eluded local mayors for decades.

Still, the project will have to clear major hurdles in the coming months as Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s administration sorts through the proposals and picks a winner. It’s not clear where all of the proposed gambling venues would go but experts generally believe a new casino should be in or near downtown.

  • Bally’s Corporation submitted proposals for two sites and would self-manage the facility, according to the city.
  • HR Chicago submitted a proposal for a single site that would be managed by Hard Rock International, according to the city.
  • Rivers Chicago at McCormick submitted a proposal for a single site that would be managed by Rush Street Gaming,
  • Rivers 78 Gaming submitted a proposal for a single site that would also be managed by Rush Street Gaming.
There has been a lot of drama and uncertainty about a Chicago Casino, but we are only mildly surprised that many of the submission include spots in the Sloop.  That said, a Casino in the 78 development is one that would drastically change the dynamics of the neighborhood and one that we're pretty lukewarm on.  There are a ton of residential units in and around that area and just feels off in our opinion.    

Will be interesting to see how the city plays this hand.

Sunday, October 31, 2021

Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Venerable, but Disgraced Sloop Restaurant Acadia Officially Closes Its Doors at 1639 S. Wabash

Likely not the biggest surprise in the world, but it looks like the venerable - but recently disgraced - two Michelin-starred Acadia (1639 S. Wabash) has officially closed their doors (via Eater):

Acadia, the two Michelin-starred restaurant from Ryan McCaskey will not reopen, the chef and owner confirms to Eater Chicago. Earlier this month, “for lease” signs went up above the South Loop restaurant marking the official end of McCaskey’s time in Chicago. The restaurant actually closed in July 2020 shortly after a shockwave of allegations were levied against McCaskey by former employees. At the time, McCaskey said he planned to quickly reopen.

McCaskey has since moved to Maine, where he runs another restaurant, Acadia House Provisions. McCaskey says the ongoing pandemic changed his mind to reopen in Chicago. In a statement to Eater, he writes “we decided to close Acadia because of the mounting obstacles of owning a business, especially a restaurant business in Chicago.”

“Rising crime, burglary attempts, staffing shortages and declining revenue at our price point also forced us to shut the doors,” a portion of McCaskey’s statement reads.

While there may be some truth to McCaskey's statement, it was hard to see how this restaurant could reopen based on the explosive accusations about the toxicity and sexual harassment within this high-profile workplace.

The demise of Acadia is a sad tale for a restaurant that was consistently considered one of the best fine dinning spots in the city.  Furthermore, it was a rare restaurant in the Sloop and one that added a level of eating we simply didn't have before.

When Acadia opened in 2012, there was excitement and anticipation that usually isn't present for new restaurants in the neighborhood.  My wife and I saw the potential during our first visit just one week after it officially opened.

Eventually Acadia shifted to a tasting menu concept and took off.  First they earned one star from the famous Michelin guide in 2013.  Then in 2015 earned two stars from the guide - a distinction that put it in rarefied air with a handful of other top restaurants in Chicago.  It was on the dining map in Chicago and in the world.

During the fall of 2020 - in the midst of the pandemic - the Chicago Tribune published some explosive allegations about owner/chef Ryan McCaskey.  If you read the allegations it was pretty damning and pretty detailed.  At the time, McCaskey said these were untrue and vowed to fight them in court - which seems to be happening currently.

The fate of the restaurant was also in limbo.  It was closed "due to covid", but most felt that it couldn't continue to operate in the face of these allegations.  While there is likely more to this story, it seemed inevitable that they wouldn't be able to reopen.

While Acadia will undoubtedly be missed, fine dinning isn't completely gone in the neighborhood.  Moody Tongue (2515 S. Wabash) brewery surprisingly achieved a two star rating from Michelin last year and Apolonia (2201 S. Michigan) has also been praised and may earn some awards as well.  

That said - Acadia exploded onto the scene about a decade ago, but leaves unceremoniously and disgraced.  A sad story no doubt.

Friday, October 22, 2021

Uber Freight Office Opens Doors at the Old Post Office

Looks like Uber's new office in the Sloop is officially open (via Tribune):
Delayed and downsized by the pandemic, Uber opened its sprawling new office space at the redeveloped Old Post Office, which will serve as the headquarters for its Uber Freight business and Chicago operations.

The San Francisco-based ride-share company cut the ribbon on its ninth-floor office Tuesday, with Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi and other top executives touting a new home and expansive future in Chicago.

The Old Post Office will be the global headquarters for Uber Freight, its fast-growing logistics division launched in 2017 to connect truck drivers with shippers. The space will also house sales, legal, marketing and other staff for the Uber Eats and ride-sharing operations in Chicago.

Chicago’s redeveloped Old Post Office, which has attracted a growing list of technology companies, is now the second largest office location for Uber, both in terms of space and staffing, behind its corporate headquarters, the company said.

Thursday, October 21, 2021

A Taco Restaurant and Liquor Store Coming to The Cooper on South Wells

We received a press release about two new businesses coming to South Wells:
Lendlease , a leading global real estate group, today announced two new retail leases at The Cooper, its 29-story luxury apartment high-rise located at 720 S. Wells St. in Chicago’s Printers Row. Tatas Tacos will open its fourth Chicago restaurant, while Hops & Scotch, a new bottle shop concept from the owners behind South Loop Market, will open its first location.
“From the beginning, Southbank has been rooted in community, so we were proud to partner with local businesses like Tatas Tacos and Hops & Scotch that, like us, were drawn to this prime riverfront location,” said Ted Weldon, executive general manager of development for Lendlease’s Chicago office. “The experiential nature of these retail and restaurant concepts, together with existing public offerings like Southbank Park and its adjacent riverwalk, will further establish Southbank as a destination for those who do not already call our community home."
Tatas Tacos, which is slated to open in spring 2022, will fill a 5,643-square-foot space on the northern end of the tower. With seating for up to 150 patrons, it will be the largest of the chain’s four locations and serve everything from its popular Mexican Classic and Craft Tacos to more formal plated meals. A brunch menu will also be available on weekends.

We're not familiar with Tatas Tacos but seems to have pretty good reviews online.  There are a lot of taco options in the neighborhood, but restaurants are a little light on Wells.

We are very familiar with the South Loop Markets and nice to see them expanding in the neighborhood with a new concept.

Best of luck to both of these spots!

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

New Renderings & Info for One Central Development Revealed

The developer for the massive One Central concept keeps on trying to push forward with his plans (via Tribune):

The developer behind the proposed $20 billion One Central development revealed details for the project’s first phase: a transit center surrounded by roughly 1.4 million square feet of retail, dining and entertainment space on a 35-acre site above the train tracks near Soldier Field.

The full plans for One Central, unveiled in 2019, include up to 22.3 million square feet of buildings with as many as 9,050 residential units and 9.45 million square feet of offices. The project still needs city and state approval to proceed, and Landmark president Bob Dunn has said he expects to submit a zoning application by late October or early November.

The $3.8 billion first phase, which Landmark calls the “Civic Build,” includes a transit center linking Metra, Amtrak and CTA trains and a new bus or tram route stopping at destinations like Soldier Field, Navy Pier, the Museum Campus, Grant and Millennium parks and McCormick Place.

The operative phrase is "still needs city and state approval to proceed" and everything we've seen seems to point to the fact that our government leaders have little interest in this project.

A big elephant in the room is the status of the Chicago Bears and the place they currently call home - Soldier Field.  The article states that the potential of the Bears moving would have minimal impact on this development, but we call BS on that one.  On the flip side, could this development help keep the Bears downtown if they can get a piece of this massive development?  No clue if that type of arangement could be struck, but we're trying to think creatively.

Anyway - the article has some fun new renderings if you're interested.  Here are a couple:

Monday, October 18, 2021

Chicago Sky Bring Championship to Chicago and the Sloop!

As the Arlington Heights Bears got owned in typical fashion by the Green Bay Packers today, it was nice to see another professional Chicago sports team bring home a championship.  Congrats to the Chicago Sky who just won their first WNBA championship at Wintrust Arena at their home court in the Sloop.  Hometown hero Candace Parker came back to Chicago and accomplished her goal (via ESPN):

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

GeeFit Opening Up Gym at Aspire Residences (2111 S. Wabash)

Looks like a training club called GeeFit is opening up shop at the Aspire Residences retail space (2111 S. Wabash):

We're not familiar with GeeFit, but did find this video on their website if you're looking for some info:

GeeFit 30 Day Challenge from Highpower Studios on Vimeo.

Welcome to the neighborhood and we wish you well!

Monday, October 11, 2021

Impact of Lingering Pandemic Sinks Harbor Restaurant (1312 S. Wabash)

We've lost a solid restaurant choice (via insta):

Here is what the caption said:
It's with much sadness that we are announcing Harbor is now closed for the foreseeable future.

With the external pressures and financial impact of the pandemic, it was a storm we just couldn't weather as a young restaurant that opened its doors January 2020.

We can't thank everyone enough for the support from our first day to the last. We will miss serving you and enjoyed every minute of the last 20 months. Harbor was very lucky to be welcomed warmly by the South Loop and have many amazing patrons and dedicated employees. We hope to see you again in the future.
Sad to see Harbor go.  It was an ambitious concept and a restaurant type the neighborhood didn't have.  We were excited about the potential and the initial response from the neighborhood was very positive

The silver lining is that the restaurant space has been retooled so whomever comes next will hopefully be able to step in with minimal buildout work.  

(Hat tip:  CW!)