Liquor store proposed for Downtown Norwood Park
by BRIAN NADIG
Alderman Anthony Napolitano (41st) will hold a community meeting on a plan to bring just the second packaged liquor business to Downtown Norwood Park at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 27, at the Norwood Park fieldhouse, 5801 N. Natoma Ave.
The proposed Wine and Spirits store would open inside a shopping plaza at 6060 N. Northwest Highway. Similar plans to open a liquor store there in 2014 failed to materialize after the store’s operator reportedly would not agree to all of the restrictions requested by residents and then-alderman Mary O’Connor (41st).
The store would be located in the northern half of the Plaza 6060 strip shopping center. The southern portion of the shopping center is in a "dry" precinct where the sale of alcohol is banned, and the northern half is in a "wet" precinct and contains Mo Dailey’s Pub, a restaurant and bar.
The project would require the lifting of a packaged liquor license moratorium which is in place along Northwest Highway between Raven Street and Neola Avenue. It also would require the Zoning Board of Appeals to use a special use permit, as the board will consider the project’s impact on nearby properties.
Ada’s Market and Deli, which opened last year at 6165 N. Northwest Highway, is the only business in Downtown Norwood Park to sell packaged liquor. Several years ago the Norwood Park Chamber of Commerce and Industry led a successful campaign to lift the dry status in some of the area’s precincts, leading to the opening of new restaurants.
Napolitano’s chief of staff Chris Vittorio said that the owner of the proposed store would be asked to agree to restrictions, such as limits on operating hours, which residents request. Any restrictions would be included in a plan of operation, which would become a condition of the store’s liquor license.
In 2014, residents requested that the plan of operation include a ban on the sale of single-serving beer containers of up to 40 ounces and a closing time of around 10 p.m.
Vittorio said that the plaza’s developer has indicated that Wine and Spirits would be an “upscale store” that would fit in with the neighborhood. Vittorio said that the owner of the proposed store has a liquor store in a nearby suburb and is not the same operator from the 2014 proposal.