Local eyecare specialist joins forces to build business

By JESSICA KIM COHEN
Herald Intern

After 15 years of running an eyecare practice solo, Hyde Park resident Dr. Cynthia Reynolds-Temple of Hyde Park’s Concept Eye Care, Ltd. 1621 E. 55th St., has begun to bring in new doctors while preparing to merge with another practice.

Concept Eye Care, which sells eyewear and provides eye diagnosis and treatment, serves about 2,500 patients for exams each year, according to Reynolds-Temple. Two new doctors were hired in January and May 2014, and Reynolds-Temple said they may be joined by an additional one or two doctors.

With this change, Reynolds-Temple said that she will not be working full-time, although she will still be associated with the practice.

“I was needing to spend more time with my family,” Reynolds-Temple said.

Concept Eye Care will also be merging with Village Eyecare, a practice that already has two offices in Chicago – one in the South Loop and one in University Village. Concept Eye Care will share Village Eyecare’s lab for prescription lenses.

Reynolds-Temple bought Concept Eye Care in 1999, though she says the practice is more than 50 years old. Originally called Concept II Optical Boutique, the practice was part of the Doctors Hospital of Hyde Park, 5800 S. Stony Island Ave.

When Doctors Hospital closed – today, the spot is occupied by the University of Chicago Laboratory School’s Earl Shapiro Hall – Reynolds-Temple moved Concept Eye Care to 55th Street, setting up shop at 1605 E. 55th St., where the Security Shop Inc. now operates.

“I was there for 10 years, but we outgrew the space,” Reynolds-Temple explained. She then moved the practice to its current location, where it has stayed for the past 5 years.

“It used to be a completely open space,” Reynolds-Temple said, noting that the space formerly housed a currency exchange. “I was able to build it out and basically design it to be a better space for a doctors office. A better space than the previous location.”

Concept Eye Care may change names once included under the Village Eyecare umbrella – however, Reynolds-Temple said it will keep its location in Hyde Park.

“So we expanded once, and now it’s going to be a second expansion,” Reynolds-Temple said.

hpherald@hpherald.com