LOGAN SQUARE — Wicker Park’s Shuga Records is expanding west to Logan Square.
Shuga Records, a record store specializing in hard-to-find vinyl and known for its vast online collection, is coming to 3306 W. Armitage Ave., owner Adam Rosen announced on social media.
It will be the second outpost of Shuga Records, serving as a retail shop and the company’s warehouse, Rosen said. The original Shuga Records store at 1272 N. Milwaukee Ave. will remain open.
Rosen said he signed a 20-year lease on the Armitage Avenue building last week after two years of searching for the right spot and securing city permitting. If everything goes according to plan, the store will open in mid-November, Rosen said.
The Logan Square shop will be similar to the Wicker Park spot, which has become one of the city’s go-to record stores since opening in 2015.
For years, Rosen has wanted to open a second location, but he has been held up by the city permitting process, he said.
Boxed vinyl records are heavy, and moving hundreds of thousands of them is a serious undertaking, Rosen said. He said he also struggled to find a landlord willing to grant him a long lease, a must for his business model.
“I can’t just move half a million records somewhere, and in five years, you see I’m doing good, and you say, ‘Oh, I’m raising your rent,'” he said.
Shuga’s back stock has been housed out of a large warehouse in Lawndale for several years, even after the Wicker Park store doubled in size. The Logan Square expansion will allow Rosen to move the company’s storage from the Lawndale space to the 7,000-square-foot Armitage Avenue building, which is more conveniently located near the Wicker Park store, he said.
It’s good timing, seeing as the Lawndale building also recently sold to a new owner, Rosen said.
“I needed to stop paying rent [in Lawndale] and bleeding money out of that warehouse,” he said.
Rosen said they plan to spend the next few months building out the Logan Square store so it’s ready to open in November, with the team making improvements to the space as time goes on. The building was most recently occupied by nonprofit Team World Vision’s offices.
Like the Wicker Park location, the Logan Square store will sell used and new vinyl and host signings and in-store shows once it’s up and running, Rosen said.
Rosen said he’s in talks with a turntable repair guy who he hopes will take over a portion of the shop.
Shuga Records is joining a stretch of Armitage Avenue continuing to attract small businesses. Haru Sushi, Doll Heads salon and Wish Me Luck Tattoo are just a few additions to the corridor in recent years.
Rosen, who lives nearby, said he’s thrilled to be playing a role in the revival of the Armitage Avenue corridor. He said he hopes the record store sparks even more activity along the stretch, an area that “needs more things that are attractive to all of the people moving there.”
“I love everything about that area. I’ve lived in Logan back and forth for 25 years. Logan has always been my go-to for everything, so … it’s good that it’s there,” Rosen said.
Listen to “It’s All Good: A Block Club Chicago Podcast”: