Norwood Park Auto Site to be sold
by BRIAN NADIG
The closing of Norwood Park Auto, 6333 N. Northwest Hwy., planned for later this month could leave the intersection of Northwest Highway and Harlem Avenue without a car dealership for the first time in about 65 years.
The property is being sold, and the new owner’s plans for the 28,000-square-foot site, which includes a lot on Highland Avenue behind the dealership’s showroom, are not known. Until last fall, Norwood Park Auto also had occupied a 26,800-square-foot storage lot at 6340 N. Northwest Hwy., but it is no longer leasing that parcel, which is for sale.
“We still made money here, but the amount of work needed to make money was a lot more than it should be,” Norwood Park Auto owner Michael Kinsch said of his reasons for closing the business and selling the property.
The dealership’s used car inventory is being transferred to Kinsch’s Windy City Motors, 2662 N. Cicero Ave., which also has a repair facility. Kinsch also owns a used car dealership on the South Side.
The Northwest Highway business started as a Ford dealership under the name “Friello Motor Sales,” but in later years it was an AMC dealership and then until 2008 it was Norwood Park Dodge. Kinsch said that he probably would have continued operating on the site if he could have kept his Dodge dealership, but he was forced to give up his franchise as part of the nationwide trend of downsizing in the U.S. auto industry.
Kinsch said that he recently came across a second-floor area that had been closed off for about 30 years and that he found numerous old signs, receipts and other materials from the 1940s and 1950s. “There’s a lot of history here,” he said. “I hope the building can remain.”
Kinsch also said that he plans to stay in his role as president of the Norwood Park Chamber of Commerce and Industry. “I still want to be around here, as things are starting to flourish,” he said of the new restaurants in the area and a planned produce market at 6165 N. Northwest Hwy.