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Wicker Park, Bucktown, West Town

City Closes Sultan’s Market For Code Violations, But Owner Hopes To Reopen Within The Next Week

The Middle Eastern restaurant has operated in Wicker Park since 1995. "It's nothing sanitary, nothing wrong like that...It's just basically building stuff," owner Shadi Ramli said.

Sultan's Market in Wicker Park was temporarily shuttered by the city for electrical and other building violations iN February 2022. It reopened March 29.
Quinn Myers/Block Club Chicago
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WICKER PARK — Sultan’s Market, long a mainstay for affordable eats in Wicker Park, has been temporarily shut down by the city for a series of electrical violations and other building code issues.

The restaurant, 2057 W. North Ave., has served Middle Eastern specialities like falafel and shawarma in the neighborhood since 1995.

An emergency closure order dated Feb. 23 posted outside the restaurant details electrical, fire protection and plumbing violations present in the building. Buildings department Commissioner Matthew Beaudet ordered the restaurant to be closed immediately.

“The property,” the notice reads, “is a public nuisance that is dangerous, hazardous and endangers the public health.”

The notice cites exposed wiring, missing smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and an improper use of extension cords, among other violations.

“The electrical system is in dangerous condition…There are open electrical boxes and exposed live wiring throughout the basement and restaurant area,” the notice states. “These conditions pose an electrical fire and electrocution hazard to any occupant.”

Reached by phone Friday, Sultan’s owner Shadi Ramli said he’s received a city permit to make repairs on the building, and that work is underway to fix the violations. He hopes to reopen in the next seven to 10 days.

“The building is over 100 years old. And so the city came to do a building inspection and the inspector didn’t like the ceiling, so it’s a lot of work to get the place back to running, and then some electrical work that we needed to fix,” Ramli said.

“It’s nothing sanitary, nothing wrong like that…it’s just basically building stuff.”

Credit: Quinn Myers/Block Club Chicago

Sultan’s also operates restaurants in Logan Square and Lincoln Park, and is in the process of opening a Pilsen location near the 18th Street Pink Line station.

Ramli said he’s temporarily reassigned his Wicker Park employees to his other locations, and is encouraging customers to visit the Logan Square location while repairs are made.

“The City of Chicago wants us to fix some electrical issues and add additional fire proofing. If you would like to support us by visiting our sister location in Logan Square 2206 N. California Ave. across the street from the California Blue Line,” a sign on the restaurant’s door reads.

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