WICKER PARK — A stand-alone Pizza Hut at the busy northwest corner of North and Western avenues will soon become a “Pizza Shut.”
There’s a plan in the works to tear the restaurant down and replace it with a 4-story, 30-unit apartment or condo building, according to a conceptual rendering released on Wednesday by Baum Realty Group.
Ald. Scott Waguespack (32nd) confirmed earlier this week that a developer had been in touch with his office about redeveloping the site but did not elaborate further.
The land the Pizza Hut sits on — divided into four parcels and surrounded by a large surface parking lot — was sold for $3.025 million in two transactions ($2.15 million on Dec. 29, 2016 and $875,000 on Feb. 7, 2017) to developer Mitch Goltz, president of Bucktown-based GW Properties, state and county records show.
Goltz did not respond to a request for comment. Goltz is also planning to tear down a gas station and build 127 new apartments adjacent to The 606.
Located at 1601 N. Western Ave., the Pizza Hut opened in 1986. Shift manager Ricardo Torres confirmed the impending closure.
“We would stay open through the summer and early fall and close before the end of this year,” Torres said.
Franchise owners plan to relocate the Pizza Hut to a new home in a strip mall not far from its original location. The restaurant plans to move to the former O’Reilly Auto Parts at 2520 W. North Ave., Torres said.
Commercial real estate brokers Baum Realty Group posted a conceptual rendering of a 4-story, 30-unit building with the same address as the Pizza Hut on Instagram Wednesday as well as on its website.
The building developers plan to develop in Pizza Hut’s place will offer up to 8,250 square-foot of retail, medical, or office space “at the crossroads of four thriving neighborhoods,” according to a marketing brochure.
Baum brokers who are marketing the space did not immediately return calls Wednesday. It’s unclear if the 30 residential units would be apartments or condos.
Developers previously planned to build a 5-story, 15,000-square-foot building at the Pizza Hut site, Curbed reported in October, but those plans were later nixed and Pizza Hut stayed open longer than first planned, Torres said.
“We were supposed to have closed in November,” Torres said.