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CA Ventures Paying $9.1M For Wicker Park Landmark

Double Door

The Wicker Park building best known as the longtime home of the Double Door rock club has a new owner. CA Residential agreed to buy the building from owner Brian Strauss for $9.1M, Block Club Chicago reports.

The sale ends the Strauss family's 41-year ownership of the building and closes the book on a contentious two-year period between Brian Strauss, Double Door and Alderman Joe Moreno (1st). Strauss evicted Double Door in February 2017, after a yearlong court battle between Strauss and Double Door co-owner Sean Mulroney over whether Mulroney and partner Joe Shanahan gave Strauss proper notice on renewing the lease. A Cook County judge ruled in favor of Strauss.

Strauss' eviction of Double Door drew the ire of Moreno, who later downzoned the building. Downzoning allows aldermen to vet developers, property owners and businesses seeking to establish a presence in their wards, giving them control over the mix of development along a commercial strip. But critics contend the process is employed in an arbitrary manner by aldermen, and Strauss filed a $9.6M federal lawsuit, alleging Moreno's actions caused a potential sale to fall through.

CA Ventures Director Jack Duncan confirmed the acquisition in a statement. In addition to the street-level retail space, the building contains 11 apartments. CA Ventures retained Mid-America Real Estate to market the club space to potential tenants, while growing ridership along the Blue Line will allow CA Residential to push for market rents.

CA Ventures also owns a building at 1755 North Damen, near The 606.