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Modern Co-op's Old Pilsen Storefront Still Empty After Skate Shop Pulls Out

By Chloe Riley | December 4, 2013 6:34am
 Pilsen skate shop Headlinerz was supposed to move in to the vacant space at 818 W. 18th St., but dropped out due to financial issues.
818 W. 18th St.
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PILSEN — A skate gear shop will not be opening its doors at 818 W. 18th St., but landlord Henry Munoz said he’s had several offers on the space, most recently rented by reclaimed furniture shop Modern Cooperative.

The 18th Street storefront has sat vacant since September, when Modern Co-op opted for more space at the newly renovated Thalia Hall. Skate shop Headlinerz — which previously had a storefront at 1011 W. 18th St. — was supposed to take over the space after Co-op left, but due to financial issues, Headlinerz owner Fernando Nieto had to drop out.

Nieto was unavailable for comment.

Munoz said he’s already received offers from an Evangelical group who wants to turn the place into a church store and hold Mass there twice a week, an artist gallery, a bookstore, and 11 offers for restaurants and bakeries.

In past lives, the space at 818 W. 18th St. has hosted an American Family Insurance, art gallery, seamstress, and, most recently, Modern Cooperative, according to Munoz.

“The businesses, they usually leave because they want more space. The seamstress left because she wanted to get married,” Munoz said. “All the business have been successful until now. It’s a great area to be in.”

The 62-year-old was born in the building and still lives in one of its nine rentals, along with his mother, 81. And while the landlord said he’d like to avoid the restaurants, he’s ultimately leaning towards another art gallery.

“It’s like a family. I take care of the building and it takes care of me,” Munoz said. “The building is a part of me. We’re a part of each other.”

The 1,011-square-foot space is currently going for $1,500 per month or best offer. Munoz said he’d like to make a final decision by early next week, but he’s still taking offers. He can be reached at 312-636-9001.