University seeks to reverse alcohol ban

Staff Writer

The precinct where upscale Japanese restaurant Yusho intends to open this summer hasn’t allowed for the sale of alcohol in over 20 years, but that may change by the end of the week.

University of Chicago spokesman Calmetta Coleman said 57 signatures were collected on a petition to reverse a ban on the sale of alcohol in the precinct, a tiny fraction of the ward where, like all Chicago wards, there are dozens of precincts. That number is at least two-thirds of the total registered voters in that precinct.

The petition was then submitted to the City Clerk’s office on Feb. 21. After that, there is a 30-day window for persons who live in the precinct to object to the validity of the signatures collected.

Coleman said once the 30-day window expires on March 22, if there are no serious challenges to the validity of the signatures, the prohibition would be overturned.
The residents of the Fourth Ward’s First Precinct voted to prohibit sale of alcohol in 1990, when it passed by a vote of 154-60. The precinct maps have since been redrawn twice and the original businesses the vote was intended to prevent from selling liquor are no longer in the precinct.

The dry area is bordered by 53rd Street, Kimbark Avenue, 55th Street and Dorchester Avenue.