Niles Village Board approves new club on Milwaukee Ave
by CYRYL JAKUBOWSKI
The Niles Village Board of Trustees at its meeting Aug. 23 approved a special use that will allow a music club and cocktail lounge to operate on the former site of Capone’s Hideout, 6873 N. Milwaukee Ave.
The board approved the special use after the Plan Commission approved the Music Box by a 3-2 vote on Aug. 8, according to the village. The commission considered the application at its July 11 meeting, but it tabled the vote due to concern expressed by the owners of a nearby motel.
"The use was approved because it has been presented as a place catering to the 50-and-over crowd and not the 20-something type joint," village manager Steve Vinezeano said. Vinezeano said that the business will cater to older patrons like the former Chambers Restaurant, 6881 N. Milwaukee Ave., did.
The Chambers closed in 2015 after more than 50 years in operation. It was known for live entertainment and dancing almost nightly. Home Comfort Services has opened in the building.
"They have some restrictions that that they need to adhere too in order to open," Vinezeano said.
The village board approved the special use providing that the off-site parking must be shared with a nearby property, the lot must be repaved, trash cans must be enclosed in the detached garage, a fence must be built along the south property line and the outdoor seating area must close at midnight. The property is zoned B-2.
The 3,300-square-foot building will have 80 seats, and parking will be provided in the adjacent lot. Music Box owner Andrew Bobrowski plans to obtain a 4 a.m. liquor license. The club will feature a disc jockey, meetings of clubs, free dance classes, movie showings and an outside catering service for larger parties.
The hours of operation will be 10 a.m. to midnight Monday to Thursday, 10 a.m. to 3 a.m. Fridays, 10 a.m. to 4 a.m. Saturdays and 10 a.m. to midnight Sundays.
The owners of Village Motel, 6871 N. Milwaukee Ave., testified at the July 11 Plan Commission meeting that they had had problems with noise from Capone’s Hideout, with parties until 8 a.m. and unruly behavior in the parking lot.
Also in Niles, demolition has been completed on the former site of the Midwesco Filter Resources facility at 7720 N. Lehigh Ave. Industrial real estate firm Molto Properties purchased the 377,128-square-foot site for about $4 million, demolished a 60-year-old building and plans to build a $7 million, 135,650-square-foot industrial plant.
The village board approved a Class 6b tax classification incentive, which is designed to encourage industrial development in underutilized areas, for the property in January. The classification reduces a property’s tax rate from 25 percent to 10 percent for 10 years. The rate increases by 5 percent a year until it reaches the regular rate.
The board also approved a Class 7b tax classification incentive for the longtime vacant property at 7025-45 N. Milwaukee Ave., adjacent to Harts Plaza, in May to aid construction of a 6,760-square-foot retail space and a 6,000-square-foot restaurant. Vinezeano said that developer Mega Group will receive about $150,000 in tax increment financing district funding in addition to the tax incentive.
Mega Group owns several nearby commercials strips and plans to combine them, Vinezeano said.