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Extreme Makeovers

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The Chicagoist is summing up a press release they received from The Congress Theater ownership that points to extensive renovations soon to come. Owner Eddie Carranza is partnering with "startup accelerator" Doejo to make an "entertainment complex" of the raggedy old Logan Square music venue. That would entail creating 10-18 retail spaces for independent businesses, two of which are likely to be a coffee shop called Flat White and a gastropub. "I don't want this building to be a cookie-cutter franchise-type building," says Carranza. "I want to give it its own character, this isn't a strip mall, this is Logan Square." Beautiful words from a businessman. This substantial development comes on the heals of a suggestion that The Congress is interested in acquiring The Portage, and follows months of wrangling with the city over noise complaints and dilapidation. Perhaps Carranza got the nudge he needed. [Chicagoist]