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Chinese Food Staple Papajin in Wicker Park Closing for Major Renovations

By Alisa Hauser | September 16, 2015 3:53pm
 Papajin at 1551 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Wicker Park has closed.
Papajin at 1551 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Wicker Park has closed.
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DNAinfo/Alisa Hauser

WICKER PARK — A staple on a busy stretch of Milwaukee Avenue since 1995, Papajin has temporarily closed its doors because the one-story storefront it has long operated out of will be demolished and replaced with a new four-story apartment building.

Earlier this week, signs taped to the window of Papajin's at 1551 N. Milwaukee Ave. informed customers and passersby that the Chinese food restaurant would be closed for building renovations.

Papajin's owner Eric Wang, who also owns the 100-year-old building at 1551 N. Milwaukee Ave., got a zoning change approved by the City Council in July that will enable him to replace the one-story building with a new four-story brick building offering a trio of three-bedroom apartments, one on each floor above his restaurant, Papajin.

Wang previously told DNAinfo Chicago that Papajin — barring any unforeseen circumstances — will continue to be on the ground floor when the new development is completed.

Wang has a pending application for a demolition permit, though no permit has been issued yet, city records show.

On Wednesday, Wang was not immediately available to discuss the project's construction timeline or when the restaurant could be back in business.

A new 4-story building design by architect Allen Villanueva, planned for 1551 N. Milwaukee Ave:

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