The 15,000-square-foot former rental truck facility at 838 W. Kinzie Street at Green Street in the West Loop will be renovated as Blind Pig Distilling Company. The gin and whiskey distillery and a yet-to-be-determined craft brewery will occupy the historic manufacturing building. The plan was approved by the Chicago Plan Commission on August 16, 2018.
According to owner Marc Bushala, “for thirsty customers, it’s another destination for their increasingly busy itinerary of Chicago distilleries and breweries. They’ll be able tour the facility and sample the spirits. Blind Pig would be a sort of “incubation lab” for spirits.”
“For now, Blind Pig will be in one of the city’s planned manufacturing districts, areas that have proven useful to breweries and distilleries in part because they prohibit residential use. The city is assessing the future use of its 26 industrial corridors, which encompass 15 planned manufacturing districts.” (Trotter, Chicago Tribune, 11/8/16)
Historic manufacturing buildings are ideal for innovative users looking for authentic buildings with character, especially for the burgeoning microbrewery and microdistillery industry. Planned manufacturing districts tend to protect historic industrial buildings, however, its essential that any architecturally significant buildings be protected prior to a significant change in the underlying zoning designation from manufacturing to residential, as market forces move swiftly after a change.
Older Fulton Market building could see new life as distillery and brewery; according to a report, the former truck rental facility has been tapped for adaptive reuse, Jay Koziarz, Curbed Chicago, 11/9/16