The "Old Rare Chicago Restaurants" thread calls to mind a phenomenon that I've always found intriguing: middle-of-block businesses on side streets. There are not too many of these, at least anymore. Perhaps there were once more. Off the top of my head, I can think of the following: there is an Irish bar in Canaryville, there is a store on Erie a couple of blocks west of Ashland, and there is a store in Hyde Park a couple blocks east of Cottage Grove and south of 55th, I think. There used to be a bar, Kelly's on the Green, on Greenview south of Diversey, I think, but it closed in the late '90's or early '00's. There used to be a store, Pete's - discussed on this forum - on Armitage a couple blocks west of Oak Park Avenue, and there was a bar a couple blocks west of Pete's on Armitage. Both closed in the '70's or '80's.
Does anyone else know of other mid-block, side-street businesses that are still in operation?
Just north of Devon on Newark (in the middle of the block) is a bar called Newark Nook. It was called McNally's when I lived there a while ago. Not far from here is another bar in the middle of the block is called Yacko's In Niles on 6636 W Albion Ave. That was called Babe's. Both of these bars been around for a very long time.
Yes, There are & were a number of unusual places tucked away on side streets.
Club Lucky on Wabansia nr Honore (NE corner, Though)
Fireside Restaurant 5700 block of N.Ravenswood
Mexican restaurant 3000 block of W.25th (on the NE and/or SE corner)
A Polish Deli at 5300 W Roscoe
Travel Agency/Tax Service 2801 S St.Louis
Just to name a few. More to add soon......
Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/16/2012 08:11PM by Chipast.
Thanks for all the posts. Just a note that this post was intended to focus on businesses (stores, bars, offices, etc.) in the MIDDLE of a side-street block.
Businesses on the corner of two side streets are also really cool, and are definitely a dying breed, but there are probably many more of those in the city than there are mid-block, side street businesses.
I still need to track down the names of the Hyde Park store and the Erie Street store that I mentioned in the original post. Once I do, I will post them, if nobody finds them first.
I remember a sort of "sweet shop" in the middle of the 6000 block of Glenwood directly across the street from Senn High School (the main source of its clientele). It was the only commercial storefront on Glenwood between Ridge Ave. and Devon. It closed around 1970 and the plate glass window was sided over making (presumeably) a residence. About ten years ago, someone acquired the property, did a little renovation and turned it into a Bed and Breakfast so it's apparently still zoned for commerce.
I remember there used to be a small store in the middle of the 2100 block of Keeler, across the street from Nixon school, where I used to go. I think it closed around 1979 or 1980.
P.S. Several teachers I had there told our class that Walt Disney attended that school.
Wardell - that Ingleside store was the one I was thinking about in my original post, but I mistakenly had remembered it being further south. Thanks for the correction.
ChiTown and Mornac - A lot of these businesses were candy stores etc. across from schools. Most of those are gone now. I looked on Streetview and I think I identified the building where that Keeler store was. If you look carefully across from a lot of schools you'll find similar buildings with "commercial"-looking facades, amid a block of otherwise "residential" buildings.
There's a barber shop on Grace, just east of Bell, on the south side of the street off the alley - looks like it might have been a garage at one point, but the shop looks like it's been there for a long time.