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Proposed St. Charles Business Prompts Worry from Alderman about Number of Bars

A proposal was tabled Monday night.

A few St. Charles aldermen raised some concerns regarding the idea of more of one type of business coming into the downtown.

“I really don’t think St. Charles needs more bars,” said Alderman Cliff Carrignan.

A request for a restaurant liquor license was the catalyst for concerns from the city Government Operations Committee Monday night. Rich Simpson, who wants to open Alibi Bar and Grill at 12 N. Third St., again requested approval from the committee.

The first attempt at a proposal for a B3 liquor license failed to impress the committee two weeks ago.

This time, even with a concession by Simpson to stop serving liquor before midnight on weekends, alderman raised concerns about available parking, what types of music the establishment would offer and also suggested taking the word “bar” out of the business name.

“I don’t anticipate it being another watering hole in the downtown district," said St. Charles Mayor Don DeWitte. He also serves as the city’s liquor commissioner.

Alibi would open in September and offer “quality food, drinks, music and live entertainment,” according to the proposal submitted to the city. It also states the establishment would cater to a “slightly older customer base by concentrating on creating an upscale experience.”

As part of ongoing discussions with the committee, Simpson agreed to stop serving alcohol at 11 p.m. Thursday and Sunday and at midnight on Friday and Saturday, even though the liquor license allows business to serve alcohol hours later.

“It’s going to be a restaurant,” Simpson said. “Come take a look.”

Carrignan had suggested taking the name “bar” out of the name.

Alderman Jim Martin, who chairs the committee, expressed some doubts to the business owner about whether the proposal is ready for approval.

“I don’t think you really know what you want,” Martin said.

The committee tabled the proposal Monday night for future discussion.

Holy Moly!!! August 03, 2011 at 03:45 AM
Just what we need...another destination for the St. Charles Bar Crawl :(
Nolan Day August 03, 2011 at 03:21 PM
Not very funny, but curious, that all of the Yes council people to Mayor Dewitte who voted for the Red Gate Bridge are now worried about our downtown businesses. It's a bridge that leads to a dead end on Route 25 and worsens traffic around North High. They did not listen to Mark Prieve who spoke at the council mtg on July 5th or to my letters to the newspapers and emails to the Mayor saying that the $30 million (to be primarily paid out of St C citizens property taxes) could be spent more wisely or not at all in these tough economic times. If the $30MN was spend to buy the downtown river front(old Manor and Blue Goose property) for a community park/venue it would help draw more retail to the downtown area instead of a bridge that will divert even more traffic away than the new Stearns Rd bridge already does. Is it that important for the Mayor who lives on the west side to get to his east side business or sell cabinets to the 47 condo owners that might soon occupy the riverfront? Save that land for 30,000 residents not for 47 condo owners that will further disrupt downtown traffic for a couple of years during construction. Nolan Day
John August 03, 2011 at 03:50 PM
Oh yes god forbid someone in these times tries to open a new business and create jobs. this refusal has democrat idealology print all over it. Complain about no jobs and no increase in economy then shoot down any possible solution to it and make up so dumb excuse why then top it off and blame Bush.
robert poznanski August 03, 2011 at 03:56 PM
One thing is obvious, downtown does not need another "bar and grill"! Yes, they do pay higher taxes than an antique store, or other types of business' that would add to the "class factor", or tourist trade, how ever, the parking situation,that is, parking directly in front, or the immediate vicinity, of any business, is non existent, in the downtown area, and that is probably the hardest thing for a business owner, to deal with! We citizens of St Charles deserve better than what is presently an"after hours meet market", that is costing us in police presence, and image! How many families do you think actually patronize the existent establishments, because of their "atmosphere"??
Nolan Day August 03, 2011 at 04:01 PM
John, Your impression of idealogy should start with the local government. Your defense of Bush is hiliarious. Any politician who speaks of a recovery and does not speak about a plan to build a number for new factories to help rebuild our middle class is a joke regardless of being a Rep or Dem.

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