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Pilsen, Little Village, Back of the Yards

West Loop Food Hall Politan Row Closing Until 2021

The announcement to stay closed until 2021 caught some vendors off guard.

Matt Haas/Politan Row/Provided
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WEST LOOP — Politan Row is set to close its doors until the spring.

Vendors were told in an email the West Loop food hall, 111 N. Aberdeen St., will be closed until March or April.

Politan Group, the team behind the food hall, which shares a building with McDonald’s headquarters, said the decision was made after they learned McDonald’s employees are not returning to the building until January, according to an email to vendors dated Oct. 9.

The letter stated nearby offices were at 5-10 percent capacity.

“The bottom line is that the population to support your businesses will not be present going into the winter months, which, this year, I believe is going to make it unreasonably tough for everyone,” Politan Group wrote in the email.

Politan Group CEO Will Donaldson told Time Out Market the West Loop food hall was closing to “best position our vendors for success in the spring.”

“While our long-term outlook for the project is very positive, we expect that this winter could be exceptionally tough, which is what governs our decision,” Donaldson told Time Out.

Politan Row could not be immediately reached for comment.

The decision to stay closed came less than a week before the food hall was set to reopen Oct. 15. Some vendors were caught off guard.

Gold Goose chef Jeremy Leven said the announcement was a difficult blow but he’s working “to find a way to keep the business alive now.”

“I understand the reasoning behind the closure,” Leven said. “If the business is not there, if there is no one to patronize the hall, then it doesn’t make sense to keep the hall open.

“But I believe the time given was … abrupt and puts a lot of us small businesses, especially ones using this as an incubator, in a tough position.”

In the meantime, Leven is working to find a new space to keep his coffee and pastry shop going.

Other vendors posted the news about the closing on social media. The owners of Masa Madra will offer pickup of their Mexican-Jewish baked goods at Hopewell Brewing Company, 2760 N. Milwaukee Ave.

After closing for several months, Time Out Market reopened in August with a limited lineup.

In September, the Chicago French Market announced it would go into partial hibernation, with fewer stalls open until March.

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