Much of River North restaurateurs and developers wait with baited breath as the council votes today, October 11, on ordinances that would ban new establishments from receiving a liquor license. Heading the pack championing the implementation of this ordinance is Alderman Brendan Reilly, who has had a public feud with River North institution Bottled Blonde in the past.
Reilly cites that many businesses in River North that run under a liquor license as a restaurant are skirting the responsibility of their true function: being a night club. Clubs are subjected to more hoops to jump through and higher costs to maintain the licensing needed to sell alcohol.
Currently River North, which is the 42nd ward, has more liquor licenses than any other ward, with 201.
Alderman Reilly feels that more liquor licenses would equate to more unruly and perhaps unsavory behavior that seems to be a problem in the area. After the Ohio street shooting back in June of 2017, Reilly also requested higher police patrolling in the area.
Does Reilly have River North’s best interest in mind? If this ordinance passes what does it mean for the nightlife of the area? Will this improve the River North realty scene?