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Liquor Ban in Downtown Norwood Park Being Weighed by Alderman

By Heather Cherone | February 18, 2014 7:31am
 Ald. Mary O'Connor (41st) is blocking plans to sell booze and beer at the 7-Eleven in downtown Norwood Park.
Ald. Mary O'Connor (41st) is blocking plans to sell booze and beer at the 7-Eleven in downtown Norwood Park.
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DNAInfo/Heather Cherone

NORWOOD PARK — Ald. Mary O'Connor (41st) is weighing a proposal to ban stores from selling alcohol in a portion of downtown Norwood Park.

In December, O'Connor blocked a request from 7-Eleven for a liquor license at its store at 6200 N. Sayre Ave., saying residents' "strong opposition" meant beer, wine and alcohol should not be sold at the store near Northwest Highway.

At that meeting, several residents voiced support for a moratorium on packaged goods liquor licenses, while still allowing restaurants to serve alcohol, said Nick Haak, an aide to O'Connor.

A public meeting is scheduled for Tuesday to allow the alderman and her aides to measure support for a moratorium, which would cover at least two blocks on the east side of Northwest Highway near Sayre Avenue. 

"This meeting is our way of gauging whether a moratorium would be supported by the community, or if it is coming from a vocal minority," Haak said.

Alcohol sales were banned in the entire precinct until 2006, when residents voted to allow booze to be sold as part of an effort to attract more restaurants to the area. There are no liquor stores in downtown Norwood Park.

Convenience and liquor stores are already banned from selling alcohol on the west side of Northwest Highway, according to city records. 

Charlene Brandt, community relations manager for 7-Eleven's Heartland Zone, declined to comment on the proposed moratorium, and said the company was still reviewing its options for the Norwood Park store.

The hearing on the proposed moratorium is scheduled for 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Norwood Park field house, 5801 N. Natoma Ave.