A Tale of Two Restaurants

Last week DNA Info revealed that Wendy’s would be building a drive-through restaurant on the old Northtown Theater site (6324 North Western Avenue). The City Council approved the exception for it, sponsored by the alderman, because that’s what the Council does when an alderman wants a business to locate in his/her ward.

Cynics will contrast the Wendy’s approval with the alderman’s supposed neutrality in the matter of the zoning change needed for the medical marijuana dispensary a couple of blocks away, or her outright refusal to even consider a zoning change that would allow an already-built, taxpayer-funded commercial kitchen to open.

One could be forgiven for thinking that the alderman clearly supports minimum wage jobs over opportunities for entrepreneurs and jobs for U.S. armed forces veterans and the disabled.

But entrepreneurs who don’t need the alderman’s help can succeed in this ward. Take Ajibola and Fummibi Johnson, Nigerian immigrants who will be opening their new restaurant, Simi’s, next door to the new Wendy’s at the site (6310 North Western Avenue) of the former Noora’s Café, which closed last year . The Johnsons needed no zoning change, and no drive-through.  Simi’s opens this Friday. Read the DNA story here.

That’s the way to do business in the 50th Ward.

Don’t get the alderman involved.


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