Oak Park's Lou Malnati's not coming until early 2014

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By Anna Lothson

Staff Reporter

Wednesday Journal reported in January that Lou Malnati's Pizzeria was expected to move into 1038 Lake St., the former location of Mancini's, sometime in the fall.

Fall is here and you may notice Lou Malnati's is not.

After receiving a few questions from our readers about the progress, I got back in touch with Mindy Kaplan, the marketing director for the company. Kaplan reported the new projected opening date in late January or early February 2014.

"Why the delay," you ask? Permits. Kaplan said the business just got the necessary permits from the Village of Oak Park to start construction this week on the interior demolition.

The restaurant group finalized the purchase of the Lake Street building at the end of 2012, along with the parking lot behind it. The restaurant group has been eyeing Oak Park as a potential location for years, and the 6,500-square-foot space will allow seating for 150.

For more on this story, check back with OakPark.com.

What Malnati's has to say

Email: anna@oakpark.com Twitter: @AnnaLothson

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Reader Comments

14 Comments - Add Your Comment

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Comment Policy

Bridgett from Oak Park  

Posted: November 5th, 2013 5:33 PM

This story is misleading because the writer, while stating that the business "just got the necessary permits," fails to mention that the business "just applied for the permits." According to the Village (via the Village Board meeting last night, 11/4), Lou Malnati's applied for their permits on October 4th. The Village issued such permits on October 8th. Four days later.

Another OP Permit Story  

Posted: October 22nd, 2013 11:55 PM

Is the village swamped with construction permits right now? In this depression its shocking how long it still takes to get these permits through the village.

OP Rez from Oak Park  

Posted: October 22nd, 2013 10:01 PM

@Clancy. Spiro duped me too. Groupon should also be sued for not checking whether the business is legit.


Posted: October 18th, 2013 12:39 PM

What about an update on Papaspiros? I've been sitting on the Groupon for a couple of months and starting to feel duped.

Phil from Oak Park  

Posted: October 13th, 2013 7:43 AM

Thanks for the update. And Bridgett's questions are excellent ones to ask about. Also, what's up with Papaspiros? They were supposed to open half-a-year ago, and still nothing. (And it's irritating they had a Groupon that sold out, and that's since expired, even before they opened!! Ouch!! But a good way to get some quick construction cash.)

Neighbor from Oak Park  

Posted: October 12th, 2013 2:40 PM

Sorry, comment posted to wrong column. Can't wait for a slice of deep dish cheese pizza if Lou does it. Edwardo's on North Ave. Is a 10!

Neighbor from Oak Park  

Posted: October 12th, 2013 2:27 PM

I say lighten up, everyone.

Pete S from Oak Park  

Posted: October 11th, 2013 3:53 PM

Doh! I am jonesing for Lou's!!!

Ned Ryerson from River Forest, Illinois  

Posted: October 10th, 2013 9:57 PM

Please, hurry!

RichF from Oak Park  

Posted: October 10th, 2013 7:32 PM

There's a long list of businesses that Oak Park has lost due to the long protracted permit process.


Posted: October 10th, 2013 7:21 PM

Too bad, been waiting for them to open as they are hands down the best. They bought the building in 2012. So, yes, it would be interesting to find out when they applied for the permits. If the Village is THAT slow, it's no wonder so many businesses have left for surroundings towns.

Bridgett from Oak Park  

Posted: October 10th, 2013 7:09 PM

Anna, do you know when Lou Malnati's applied for the permits? Maybe ask Mindy, "Is the permit process in Oak Park slower than expected? Is it slower/more difficult than other communities where you have restaurants?" Answers to those questions would make for a great follow up story.

Reality Check  

Posted: October 10th, 2013 6:50 PM

There's no mention at all how long it took them to get the permits, only that they just now got them.

Glynne Gervais from Oak Park   

Posted: October 10th, 2013 6:17 PM

Again permits. We must improve the way we handle permits

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