WIN: Vacant Noel State Bank To Become a Barnes & Noble Bookstore

Wicker Park Walgreens / Noel State Bank, 1919, Gardner C. Coughlen, 1601 N Milwaukee Avenue. Designated a Chicago Landmark in 2008. Photo credit: Walgreens / Padgett and Company
Wicker Park Walgreens / Noel State Bank, 1919, Gardner C. Coughlen, 1601 N Milwaukee Avenue. Designated a Chicago Landmark in 2008. Photo credit: Walgreens / Padgett and Company

“Barnes & Noble will open four new Chicago-area locations this summer, including a store in a recognizable former bank building in Wicker Park.

“The world’s largest retail bookstore chain plans to open a store in the former Walgreens flagship building at 1601 N. Milwaukee Ave. early this summer, as well as locations at 651 W. Diversey Parkway in Lincoln Park and in suburban Northbrook and Oswego.

“‘We generally want a bookstore everywhere. Every community, we think, needs a bookstore,’ Janine Flanigan, Barnes & Noble’s senior director of store planning and design, told Crain’s, adding that ‘we were really missing the Chicago market,’ with no stores within city limits for several years.

“Barnes & Noble is leasing the entire 26,133-square-foot space at the former Walgreens space in Wicker Park, though Flanigan said the store will likely take up about 16,000 square feet and that the bookseller is still determining whether it will take up all three floors.

“Walgreens closed its store at that location in January 2023. Located in the former Noel State Bank building, the store was known for historical features and Vitamin Vault in the building’s basement.

A Block Club Chicago article about the closure noted that since the building, which was constructed in 1919, is part of a city landmark district, the owners are required to preserve its historical features. The building’s owner is Convexity Properties, a subsidiary of Chicago-based trading firm DRW Holdings. The property was fully renovated in 2012.” (Herzog, Crain’s Chicago Business, 2/7/24)

Read the full story at Crain’s Chicago Business

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