Ubaa Tap runs dry – but Walgreens wants to buy.RoundTable photo

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The Village of Skokie’s Plan Commission will meet at 7:30 p.m. tonight (Dec. 6), to discuss plans for a new 14,490-square-foot Walgreens to be built at the former site of Ubaa Tap on Crawford Avenue and Old Orchard Road. Walgreens is also seeking permission from the Village for a liquor license and permission to build a drive-through.

Because the the north and east parts of the property abut Evanston – City officials and Sixth Ward Alderman Mark Tendam are urging Evanston residents to attend the meeting to protest the proposal.  

While the proposed site of the Walgreens is entirely within the Village of Skokie, the proposed project is directly across the street from residential property located in the City of Evanston to the north (Harrison Street) and east (Crawford Avenue).
Ald. Tendam sent an email message to his constituents alerting them to the proposal, which said in part, “Interested parties, including Evanston residents, are encouraged to join me in attending this meeting or submit comments.”

“It sounds like a very big plan,” Ald. Tendam told the RoundTable. “Evanston is right across the street [Crawford Avenue] and along Old Orchard Road. People in Skokie will have their backs to it.”

Dennis Marino, zoning manager for the City of Evanston, said several items relating to the redevelopment of the property will be on the agenda of the Dec. 6 meeting. The developer of the site is Terraco, the company that is building the Trader Joe’s on Chicago Avenue in Evanston.

“Walgreens has been very active in developing new sites,” Mr. Marino said. One of these is planned for south Evanston, on Chicago Avenue at Kedzie Street.

At the meeting, Skokie officials will discuss several agenda items involving the former Ubaa Tap restaurant and other adjacent parcels to the west and south of the property. One of them involves rezoning “a couple of residential lots,” said Ald. Tendam. The agenda items include map amendments, special use permits for the sale of liquor and a pharmacy drive through. Other related items under consideration include a subdivision, alley vacation, dedication of a new alley and other zoning relief.

The Ubaa Tap, formerly known as Ubaa & Old Crawford Inn, was located at 9956 Crawford Avenue for more than 70 years and went out of business earlier this year.
Dallia Floors, a tenant on the site, will relocate to Golf Road and Crawford Avenue early next year, Mike Scatena, vice president of Dallia, told the RoundTable.

That area of Northwest Evanston has seen a lot of development activity in the past few months. Residents there successfully discouraged a McDonald’s with a drive-through from Gross Point Road near Old Orchard Road. They were, however, unable to defeat a Chase Bank branch and drive-through just a few blocks north of there, at Grosse Point Road and Crawford Avenue.  

Information and access to plans and maps of the proposed project are available by contacting the Skokie Community Development Department at 847-933-8447 or visiting the Village website, Skokie.org.

The meeting will take place at the Village Hall, 5127 Oakton St., Skokie. Evanston residents can attend the meeting to comment on the construction of the new Walgreens; they can also call 847-933-8447 or email info@skokie.org to do so.