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Double Door Building Sale to Downtown Investors Underway, Records Show

By Alisa Hauser | January 5, 2016 9:58am
 Film trucks for
Film trucks for "Chiraq" parked outside of Double Door.
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DNAinfo/Alisa Hauser

WICKER PARK —  A Downtown investment firm plans to buy the building that has long been home to Wicker Park's iconic music club, Double Door, according to county records.

The price the company is offering to pay for the 113-year-old property was undisclosed.

Speedwagon Properties' "affidavit of interest" to buy the four-story building at 1570-72 N. Milwaukee Ave. was accepted by the seller, Brian Strauss, on Dec. 18 and notarized on Dec. 23. Reaching a final agreement could take weeks.

Such affidavits are sometimes used when there are possible legal complications in the sale of a property. Strauss' efforts to evict tenant Double Door have been ongoing; the music club's lease expired on Oct. 31 and Strauss, who owns the property with his father Harry, has not accepted any rent payments from club owner Sean Mulroney.

Reached on Tuesday, Jason Schiffman, a partner at Speedwagon who signed the agreement with Strauss, described the building just south of the Milwaukee, North and Damen avenues intersection in the heart of Wicker Park as being in "a great location."

Schiffman declined to elaborate further on the possible sale or what the plans are for the building.

Mulroney's landlord has taken the music club to forcible eviction court, where Double Door's case has been continued until Friday.

Speedwagon Properties is owned by Steve Khoshabe, a prominent investor who "snapped up several busted condo projects," according to a 2010 Crain's story about Khoshabe and his partners Schiffman and Jeff Perelman.

The county documents present the approximately 17,000-square-foot building, which also offers 11 loft-style apartments above Double Door, ranging from 950 to 1,400 square-feet, in "as is" condition. The 32-page document also says that the buyer/purchaser is taking the building even with an existing lawsuit underway plus other conditions.

In recent weeks, there have been rumors circulating among several real estate insiders that Shake Shack plans to move into the Double Door spot. 

When asked about those rumors, Schiffman replied, "no comment."  Just before Christmas, a Shake Shack company official said that the company had "no plans to share at the moment" in regards to an expansion to Wicker Park but added, "we love Chicago."

"The Midwest is close to our hearts since Shake Shack founder Danny Meyer’s family hails originally from Chicago and St. Louis, and much of Shake Shack’s inspiration was drawn from his home region," a Shake Shack spokeswoman said.

Shack Shack has two other locations in Chicago, in River North and the ground-level of the Chicago Athletic Association hotel at 12 S. Michigan Ave., which opened in May.

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