CHICAGO — A judge will issue a written ruling in the next day after attorneys try to buy more time for vendors getting evicted from the Little Village Discount Mall.
Attorneys filed an injunction this week to give vendors more time for the vendors getting evicted. They received a letter stating they have to be out of the mall by March 26.
Novak Construction purchased the mall in 2019 and is planning renovations but did not reach a deal with one of two leasing companies that were operating in the area. P K Mall management said a proposed rent increase was unreasonable and unsustainable.
Forty vendors are being forced to leave this weekend unless the judge rules in favor of granting emergency release.
The attorney for the vendors argued that the vendors should be considered tenants with protections to stay until their individual agreements with the leasing operators expire.
“The developer knew that there were tenants — yes, they are part of a sublease and they did not renew with the management — but that is not the fault of the tenants who are hopeful that they can be in agreement,” said Ald. Byron Sigcho-Lopez (25th Ward).
There is a vacant building at 26th and Pulaski Road that could serve as a new home for vendors but that building is not ready yet.
“All we were asking the developer is to wait until we get the response from the contractor so that by mutual agreement, we decide on an adequate time to relocate,” Sigcho-Lopez said. “What these developers are doing is literally destroying the city of Chicago and neighborhoods like Little Village.”