Nightclub could land on C.P. square

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Nightclub could land on C.P. square

Postby Big Dog » Tue Dec 06, 2005 11:09 am

Nightclub could land on C.P. square

CROWN POINT | By voting down an entertainment group's attempt to open a nightclub on East Joliet Street Monday, the City Council might have put another bar on Crown Point's downtown square.

Following the Council's unanimous denial of his request for a special use, Ron Burget announced plans to locate the club in the former Strudel Haus Pastries site, 208 S. Main St. Because the property is zoned B-1, serving alcohol already is a permitted use. Burget said he could open the club in as little as 60 days.

"The city didn't look at the overall picture," said Burget, president of J & J Entertainment. "They didn't think outside the box here on this."

What city officials did listen to were comments from people who work in or live near the building where Burget wanted to put the club, in the 1400 block of East Joliet Street. The building houses a dentist's office and South Lake County Community Services, Inc., and is near the Penn Oak subdivision.

About a dozen people wrote letters protesting or spoke at the meeting against the club, which could have a capacity of 400. Nearby resident Dick Sauerman said allowing a nightclub so close to children's softball fields could hurt the city's image and economic development.

Steve Brasel, a therapist who works for New Leaf Resources, 1450 E. Joliet St., wrote to the council asking members to reject the club. Brasel noted city leaders are spending a lot of time debating the development of Interstate 65 and U.S. 231.

"We believe the same planning and forethought is also key in maintaining attractive parks, businesses and residential neighborhoods," he said.

Speaking for J & J Entertainment, attorney Jim Wieser said the club would only be open from 8 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays, and the plan was to use it to train staff for an establishment at 10550 and 10570 Broadway. In 18 months to two years, the club would become a restaurant, he said.

But Councilman Paul Bremer, R-1st, said he didn't want to see the club open for even one night, and Council member Carol Drasga, R-at large, quickly agreed.

"It does not fit in with the surrounding area," she said.

Wieser told the Council J & J Entertainment chose the Joliet Street site because of its large parking lot, which it planned to pay to keep lit and regularly clean. J & J Entertainment wanted to avoid locating on the square because it could not control parking downtown, he said.

Neither Wieser nor company officials told Council members during the meeting the club would attempt to locate downtown if their request was denied. But, Wieser had said alternative sites "may cause traffic difficulties for the community."
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