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Daley's, City's Oldest Restaurant, Moving After 125 Years In Same Spot

By Sam Cholke | September 11, 2017 2:07pm | Updated on September 11, 2017 4:01pm
 Daley's Restaurant will move across the street next year, leaving its home of 125 years.
Daley's Restaurant will move across the street next year, leaving its home of 125 years.
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DNAinfo/Sam Cholke

WOODLAWN — Preservation of Affordable Housing on Monday announced it was buying the home of Daley’s Restaurant, the oldest restaurant in the city.

Preservation of Affordable Housing said also bought six other storefronts on the southeast corner of 63rd Street and Cottage Grove Avenue in addition to Daley’s, at 809 E. 63rd St.

But don't fret over Daley’s, which has been in the same location since 1892. It's moving to the northeast corner of 63rd and Cottage Grove in Woodlawn Station, another development by the developer under construction and scheduled to open in a year.


Daley's co-owner Mike Zee could not be reached for comment, but said in May he was considering moving.

He said at the time he felt the legacy of Daley's was more about the people and families that have kept the restaurant going for 125 years than the physical space.

Bill Eager, vice president of the developer’s Chicago office, declined to say how much the developer paid for the property.

“We’re just going to operate the property for now and figure out what the best use is there on the corner,” Eager said.

He said a plan for the corner will be developed in the next six months with the intention putting it into action over the following year.

“I don’t think we would be doing more housing there,” Eager said.

Preservation of Affordable Housing is best known in Woodlawn for its redevelopment of the Grove Parc apartments as affordable housing. The developer has since branched out into developing affordable housing elsewhere in Woodlawn, but Monday’s sale marks its first strictly commercial project.

Eager said the developer will go to the existing tenants, which include a cellphone store, clothing store, liquor store, a currency exchange and computer repair shop, to talk about the change in ownership. He said there were no plans to close any of the businesses; the storefronts would be improved and the corner cleaned up.

“We want to see that corner be more of an asset to the community,” Eager said.

He said the developer is working on leasing the remaining 7,000 square feet of retail space in Woodlawn Station, which will have Daley’s and Ain’t She Sweet Cafe as anchor tenants.