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Chicago North Side

Uptown Entertainment Progression

The Aragon and Riviera are progressing in their renovations, although at very different rates.

After their court date appearance last Wednesday, the city ordered the owners of the Aragon to “repair their crumbling terra cotta in the next seven days to avoid fines that were piling up.” according to a report done by DNAInfo Chicago. Repairs are reportedly underway.

The city filed an amended complaint against the Riviera, suggesting additional issues have been noted.

The push to renovate the Uptown theater district is quickly moving forward. The Uptown Theater itself is rumored to get much needed renovations in the next two years, with the primary goal of opening its doors for the first time since 1981.

Cities often use theater renovations to boost local revenue, increase neighborhood draw, and bolster city leaders positions in the neighborhood.

After two and a half years closed due to financial and management issues, the iconic Le Petit Theater located in New Orleans is ready to re-open. Upon completing a 51-million dollar renovation, the Saenger Theater  also in New Orleans is set to re-open. During Hurricane Katrina, water levels reached “shoulder deep in front of the stage” at the Saenger, according to The Times Picayune.

The renovation of the Saenger was particularly significant for New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, and was necessary to reinvigorate the devastated downtown area.

Uptown has a less than stellar reputation and city officials are pushing hard to get the neighborhood turned around. The Uptown Theater is arguably the most iconic theater in Chicago, and has gone un-noticed more or less for the past 20-years until now, when condo developments are popping up and real estate firms moving in to the neighborhood.

Once opened and running, there is no doubt The Uptown Theater will produce significant revenue for the neighborhood and city.



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