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Lucky Tavern Owner Predicts Andersonville-Like Transformation on Clark

By Benjamin Woodard | April 23, 2015 12:55pm
 Khoshaba Khamis plans to open his new sports bar this summer.
Khoshaba Khamis plans to open his new sports bar this summer.
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ROGERS PARK — A new tavern owner on Clark Street in Rogers Park predicts the area will undergo a transformation akin to what happened in Andersonville.

"The neighborhood is changing," said Khoshaba Khamis, who met with neighbors Wednesday night inside his new bar, called Lucky, as he awaits a license from the city. "One day we're going to have an Andersonville copy here."

Khamis said he expected his "sports bar" at 6651 N. Clark St. to open this summer if he's granted a liquor license. He would not need a zoning change nor need a liquor moratorium to be lifted on the block.

A few neighbors worried the bar would attract criminals and gang members.

"Can we prevent something like another Jarheads?" said Rich Mayszak, a resident, referring to the former dive bar down the street that was shuttered by the city in 2013.

But Khamis and his business partners said his bar would be "quiet" and neighborhood friendly.

"It's not one of the crazy bars," he said.

Khamis, who also owns the building, might expand to the storefront to the south and open a restaurant. That storefront is occupied by a Mexican ice cream shop, but its lease is up in December, he said.

The bar could also expand into the residential units above, he said.

Neighbors also questioned whether there would be enough clientele for his bar to stay in business.

"Either we get up and run — or we live in the neighborhood," Khamis said. "We are going to fight to make it successful one day."

Khamis has operated several other restaurants and bars in Rogers Park, including Big Buns and Pita, later known as Sahara Kabob, which was located next door to the proposed tavern until 2012. He also owned MK Lounge from 1986 to 1990 at the northwest corner of Clark and Devon Avenue.

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