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Alderman has no beef with GW Properties’ plan for Portillo’s eatery in Avondale

Alderman Carlos Ramirez Rosa and a rendering of Portillo’s (Credit: Facebook)

Alderman Carlos Ramirez-Rosa (35th) will throw his weight behind GW Properties’ proposal to build a Portillo’s and parking lot in Avondale.

Ramirez-Rosa will approve a tweak to the city’s zoning to allow for construction of the 9,900-square-foot restaurant at 3357 West Addison Street. That will let the Chicago-based developer raze the existing taxi stand and build a drive-thru restaurant in its place. It would be the chain’s third location in the city. The bulk of the 90,000-square-foot site will be dedicated to a 128-vehicle parking lot. The plan was first presented during a public meeting in November.

The entire project is set to cost around $15 million, according to GW principal Mitch Goltz. The restaurant will be built with a “prohibition-style” brick facade, evoking early 20th-century Chicago architecture, Goltz said. GW Properties has yet to purchase the land, and it still needs the Zoning Board of Appeals to approve a special-use permit for a drive-thru. Goltz said he hopes to complete the building in time for the restaurant to open by the end 2019.

The site is in the alderman’s ward, meaning the project requires his consent to move forward. Ramirez-Rosa made the announcement in his constituent newsletter on Wednesday.

Portillo’s, known across the region for its decadent Italian beef sandwiches and chocolate cake shakes, operates dozens of locations across Illinois but just two in Chicago, including one in River North. The other sits across the street from a 77,000-square-foot lot in the South Loop where GW Properties has proposed building a drive-thru Chick-Fil-A.

Last year, Stan Sobieski was approved to build a 48-unit apartment complex at 2823 West Belmont Avenue. Elsewhere in Avondale, the Hubbard Street Group and Knickpoint Ventures are converting the 1.5-million-square-foot former Marshall Fields warehouse at 4000 West Diversey Avenue into a mixed-use hub with 123 apartments.

Last month, GW and Angelo Gordon secured a $42 million loan to buy and redevelop two Macy’s department stores in Schaumburg and Oak Brook.

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