In spring 2014, the City of Chicago announced a program called "Up the Block," in which entrepreneurs would compete to start businesses in vacant storefronts, with encouragement, mentoring, and financial incentives from community supporters. (You can read more about the project here.) Uptown was chosen as the pilot neighborhood, with FLATS/Cedar Street partnering with the city, Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Ald. Cappleman, Uptown United, and others to make it happen.
Monday it happened. The first "Up the Block" business opened: The Public Barber, at 1319 West Wilson, in the Norman Hotel.
|Hard to believe this was once a cupcake shop!|
Its website says, "Our goal is to bring the community back to the barbershop, through genuine conversation, community events featuring local artists and musicians, and partnerships with surrounding small business. Everyone is welcome through our doors … So please, stop in, say hello, and be groomed."
The Public Barber is open Monday through Saturday and can be reached at 773-754-7363. Its Facebook page (from which these images were taken) is here.
If you're in the neighborhood, stop by and welcome them to Uptown and wish them good luck in their new endeavor.