For nearly 65 years, Harold’s Chicken has been a staple in the black community.
But there are signs the franchise, which has locations all over Chicago’s South Side, may have worn out its welcome — at least one planned for one neighborhood.
Last month, a franchisee signed a lease for a space in the 4500 block of South Indiana but couldn’t get a business license because an alderman had suddenly rezoned the property for residential use.
Now, Kandy Cobbs, the owner of the building at 4507-09 S. Indiana, is crying foul.
“I feel Harold’s was chased away unfairly for personal reasons or personal gain. Come on, now we don’t like chicken?” she asked.
The owners of the Harold’s Chicken franchise declined to comment on the advice of lawyers.
But Ald. Pat Dowell (3rd) said nearby residents didn’t want a Harold’s Chicken, especially since there were already numerous complaints about activity outside a small grocery store at that same location.
“There were concerns about more people hanging out, more activity, more traffic,” Dowell said. “With residents in the area requesting some relief, I changed the zoning back to residential.”
Dowell did more than change the zoning.
Citing nuisance complaints, Dowell used her aldermanic power to bring heat.
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