Daily file photo by Ina Yang
Much to the Northwestern community’s dismay, Cheesie’s Pub & Grub announced in a Facebook post Wednesday afternoon that its Evanston location will close Friday.
“As much as it pains us to have to do this….the time has come,” the post said. “We loved our time with you all but due to rent increases we will be closing our doors this Friday, June 8th.”
The restaurant, 622 Davis St., will serve its last few Macs and Tenderizers Friday from 4 p.m. until midnight. After that, the Facebook post said, the restaurant hopes to search for a new location in Evanston.
Paul Zalmezak, Evanston’s economic development manager, said high rents for businesses in the downtown district is one of the “biggest challenges” in the city. He said the city will work with the Cheesie’s ownership to help find them a new location in downtown Evanston.
“As long as people pay the rent, landlords are going to continue to ask for the high rent,” he said. “These high-rental structures will result in higher turnover, and it definitely makes it much harder for independent businesses to open.”
The Cheesie’s location on Davis Street is a “high-demand” area in Evanston, Zalmezak said, adding that it fits a “niche” market for affordable comfort food.
“It’s a bummer … but if we believe what they said in their post they’re going to find another space in Evanston,” Zalmezak said. “We just have to make sure we do it quickly so that the next round of freshmen get to experience Cheesie’s.”