UPTOWN — Ald. Harry Osterman (48th) said his office is taking several steps to make Argyle Street in Uptown a safer, more business-friendly corridor.
"It's a time when a great deal is happening in Uptown," Osterman said Tuesday at the State of Uptown Luncheon, referring to the coming renovation of the Wilson Red Line Station and various other development initiatives, including those in the part of his ward that includes Uptown.
Starting Wednesday, police officers will be patrolling Argyle Street on foot from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Osterman said. He said the foot patrols would provide "a significant calming presence" in the area as the temperatures rise, which typically coincides with increased crime.
A weekly night market will debut on Argyle Street this summer, Osterman said.
The Argyle Night Market would be on Argyle between Kenmore Avenue and Sheridan Road, and it would be open from 4-8 p.m. every Thursday from June 27 to Sept. 19, according to Osterman's office. The market will include food vendors from Argyle restaurants, farm stands and live performance arts.
"We really look at this as a way to bring people to Argyle Street as a destination," Osterman said.
Plans for the Argyle Streetscape will commence this spring, Osterman said.
This spring and summer, "a task force of business owners, property owners, community residents and stakeholders" will meet with city employees and a contractor to review design ideas in advance of public meetings in the fall, according to a document Osterman's office distributed at the luncheon.
Design elements of the streetscape should be finalized by winter, with construction slated for 2014.
But critics of the $260,000 Asia on Argyle sign that was lambasted across Chicago (and the Internet) will have to grin and bear it, the alderman said.
“The identifier is going to stay, for those of you who have problems with the identifier,” Osterman said.