Wicker Park businesses react to possible new round of looting

Date: 
08/10/2020
ClosedStores

This is a reminder of what it looked like the last time everyone shut down

UPDATE:
*IPS added ramp closure of Interstate 90 northbound and southbound at Division until 6 a.m. on Tuesday.

This morning's news about Sunday night and Monday morning looting in the loop and in the North/Clybourn area has Wicker Park businesses concerned and officials taking new tactics.

So many are still trying to come back from the first and second rounds of destruction, they are experiencing a variety of reactions to this new round of threats. 

Whether on Milwaukee, Elston or other commercial streets, some businesses have once again boarded up their storefronts. According to one business owner, some are staying in their stores all night, others are removing all cash and valuable merchandise. 

The Wicker Park Bucktown Chamber of Commerce's Executive Director Pamela Maas advised business owners to also remove their computers and laptops. In addition she suggested leaving lights on all night. 

While 1st Ward Alderman Daniel La Spata said that the Chicago Police Department's (CPD) 14th District will be closing down Milwaukee Ave. from Ashland to Damen, CPD will not be taking those actions unless the need arises, according to the 14th's acting commander Captain Edwin Kaup, Jr. 

What the 14th is doing, like the rest of the CPD, is operating in 12-hour shifts with all days off suspended. They are breaking their officers into three groups, two 12-hour shifts in their cars with the third group on foot and bike patrol focusing on commercial areas during business hours. 

The Illinois State Police (ISP) is being asked by many alderpersons to close certain on-and-off highway ramps. However, according to an ISP spokesperson, that is not *[see above] scheduled in the Wicker Park and Bucktown area Monday night. 

Streets and Sanitation workers will be deployed into neighborhoods to help when needed, according to 32nd Ward Alderman Scott Waguespack. They can assist police and help with traffic, blocking off major arterial routes and intersections of some business districts.

According to 2nd Ward Alderman Brian Hopkins, Divvy Service will not be available from "North Avenue to Ashland Avenue and Cermak Road between 8 p.m. and 6 a.m."

He points out that access to the downtown area is NOT a curfew. All residents, essential workers and employees whose businesses are located downtown will have access at all times, he points out.

Community residents are all wishing all local businesses "good luck."

 

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