An introduction to parking requirements: New Walgreens in Wicker Park


Walgreens opened a new store this month inside the Noel State Bank building at 1601 N Milwaukee, at the six-way intersection of Damen, North, and Milwaukee Avenues. Walgreens wonderfully restored the interior and exterior of the registered landmark building. The property acquisition (formerly occupied by MB Financial Bank) included a small parking lot with a driveway entrance on Milwaukee Avenue by Red Hen Bread Co. and an entrance through the alley. The parking lot has 7 car parking spaces, including 1 accessible parking stall. There are 8 bike parking spaces. It appears there would have been 10 but a bike rack wasn’t installed because it would have blocked a doorway that opens only from the inside. (The previous occupant used the parking lot to hold ~15 cars.)

When I first saw that Walgreens was building a parking lot, I asked myself, “Why do they need one? There’re three bus routes, a train line, this neighborhood is very walkable and many people bike around here. Plus, there’s a Walgreens store 0.37 miles away with 35 parking spaces.”* (No, I don’t do distance calculations in my head to that many significant digits – I figured that with an online map.) Continue reading An introduction to parking requirements: New Walgreens in Wicker Park

Grid Shots: Bike parking edition

This weekend’s Grid Shots is about bike parking, one of my favorite topics.


Exterior bike racks at the Damen Blue Line station in Wicker Park sit empty at 5 AM on the last Wednesday in August 2011. Unlike their interior cousins, these racks will fill up in a couple of hours. Photo by Mike Travis. 


The Andersonville Jewel-Osco at 5516 N Clark was renovated over a year ago, but bike parking wasn’t installed until August 2011. And the bike rack is a doozy. The store promptly disrespects it by blocking the second of only two usable spaces on the “grill rack” (an unacceptable bike rack and should not be used). Jewel is known for its use of this bike rack. Photo by Kevin Zolkiewicz. 


I’d like to know what the thought was in designing this small bike parking area. The designer chose an acceptable bike rack and put it within 20 feet of the entrance (better than the 50 feet minimum) but reduced ease of access by installing it too close to a bollard and fence. Photo by Kevin Zolkiewicz.  Continue reading Grid Shots: Bike parking edition

Grid Bits: Electric car charging network; pinup chicks calendar


One of the new electric vehicle charging stations popping up at Walgreens around Chicago. 


Walgreens is adding charging stations for electric vehicles at many of its Chicago-area stores and around the country. I read about a Chargepoint station at the Walgreens nearest me (2744 N California) when I was browsing my block on EveryBlock. Then I read about this and other stations around the city, including at Soldier Field, on Curbed Chicago. Continue reading Grid Bits: Electric car charging network; pinup chicks calendar