Red Ivy closing to make way for Wrigleyville improvements

The Cubs closed out their opening home stand on Sunday. When they return to The Friendly Confines at the end of April, one of Wrigleyville's most popular sports bars will no longer be open for business.

CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -- The Cubs closed out their opening home stand on Sunday. When they return to The Friendly Confines at the end of April, one of Wrigleyville's most popular sports bars will no longer be open for business.

It's not just the Cubs' marquee getting a make-over.  An entire section of Clark Street is undergoing a major redevelopment which means the end of an era at the Red Ivy sports bar.

"Unfortunately, we are shutting down. They want to change the face of Wrigleyville and make it more family oriented,” said Brian Miller, Red Ivy General Manager.

The $140 million project includes 170,000 square feet of retail, 148 rental units, a rooftop pool, and hundreds of new parking spaces.

Long time Red Ivy regulars are going to have to find a new watering hole and not everyone's happy about the changes.

"I think it's overboard but that's just one man's opinion. Well, I mean Addison Street would be fine but going down Clark Street is taking a lot away from the neighborhood," said Red Ivy regular, Fred Broda.

Mike Wszolek has had a spot reserved for him at the bar for nine years. When he walks out of the Red Ivy for the last time he says he'll take some great memories with him.

"I’ve been here for two of the Blackhawks' championships, a lot of wins, and a lot of losses for the Cubs," said Wszolek.

As the Cubbies close out the first home stand of the season and as the last customers walk through the door, the Red Ivy's owner, Jessie Boyle, will be looking back at what the sports bar has meant to Wrigleyville and to him.

I'm sad, definitely, but I think when you look at what we created it's not about the building it's about the people. And when I think about the past, all the people I've met here -- the celebrities, the politicians, that's going to stay up here the entire time," said Boyle.
 

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