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Greenheart Shop Exits Wicker Park, Hopes for More Foot Traffic in Old Town

By Alisa Hauser | July 2, 2013 12:08pm
 Greenheart Shop at 1911 W. Division St. in Wicker Park is closing July 21 and headed to Old Town.
Greenheart Shop at 1911 W. Division St. in Wicker Park is closing July 21 and headed to Old Town.
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DNAinfo/Alisa Hauser

WICKER PARK — After four years in the neighborhood, the Greenheart Shop, an eco-conscious boutique that sells fair-trade clothing, accessories and home furnishings made by international and local artisans who receive "fair wages" and use sustainable materials, is moving to Old Town.

Kara Rhodebeck, assistant manager of Greenheart Shop at 1911 W. Division St., which is the retail division of the nonprofit Center for Cultural Interchange, said Tuesday the move was prompted by "a hope there will be more foot traffic" in Old Town.

"We had [foot traffic] in Division but not what we need to stay afloat. We're a nonprofit," Rhodebeck said.

Rhodebeck said she will "miss the restaurants and bike access and the people."

Greenheart Shop's Marketing Manager Valerie Brod said the store's lease was up and "and rent was going to increase significantly, which is the primary reason for our move. We are a nonprofit store and needed to find a location that fit our budget and allows us to meet our goals."

Brod added: "We have loved being in the Wicker Park neighborhood and greatly appreciate all of the customer relationships we have. We look forward to serving our loyal shoppers in our new location while expanding our customer base in a new neighborhood."

Greenheart Shop's last day in business will be July 21. In mid-August the shop plans to reopen at 1714 N. Wells St. in Old Town, Rhodebeck said.

All clothing, accessories, home furnishings and kitchen items are currently on sale, with discounts up to 75 percent off, according to sign in the storefront's window for Greenheart's Moving Sale.

As Greenheart Shop moves on, its landlord Don Link told DNAinfo.com Chicago that the 2,000-square-foot storefront just east of the bustling Damen and Division intersection will be available for rent Aug. 1.

Link said he "wishes only to rent out the space to a retail or boutique tenant."

Link said he's owned the vintage Victorian building for more than 25 years and there are "not many like it" remaining on Division Street.

The red brick building was built in 1888, according to an online real estate listing that describes the space as a "classic Chicago storefront."