LAKEVIEW — The owner of Belmont and Clark alternative lifestyle shops like Taboo Tabou is aiming to sell half his products in preparation for a massive downsize.
A proposal for an 11-story tower at Belmont and Clark means the potential shuttering of three shops Taboo Tabou, Architectural Revolution and Blue Havana, in their current location near the Dunkin' Donuts corner. The stores are owned by Mark Thomas, who also owns punk shop The Alley.
Thomas, who is also running for alderman of the 44th ward, said in an email to customers that the shops will "continue in a smaller form," but final size or location is still up in the air.
"We are currently negotiating things," he wrote. "Nothing is certain."
The Alley itself, 3228 N. Clark St., will remain open in its current location, as Thomas owns the building.
The shops will all be offering items for sale as Thomas looks to liquidate 50 percent of store inventory.
First items will be 40 percent off original price, second items will be 50 percent off and third items or more will be 60 percent off.
Taboo Tabou, 854 W. Belmont Ave., sells lingerie, fetish clothes, adult toys and bachelorette party accessories. Architectural Revolution, 3226 N. Clark St., offers international jewelry, incense and accessories. Blue Havana, 856 W. Belmont Ave., is a cigar, tobacco and smoke accessory shop.
And The Alley, of course, been a destination for punk and counterculture products since 1986, ultimately helping the corner earn the nickname "Punkin' Donuts."
"This is a bittersweet letter, who could have imagined 40 years of this exciting retail venture," Thomas wrote. "It's been a one-of-a-kind retail experiment."