22 April 2010

Walgreens Revisited

About a month ago, I did a post about a case study for the Walgreens located at the intersection of Milwaukee and Wood in Wicker Park. It got a pretty good reception, but was only meant as a rough outline. Yesterday, I was visiting the same friend's apartment and looking down at the store. I would now like to give you some revisions. These are still working with the existing structure, but this option would be significantly more expensive since some renovations to the store would be necessary.

Here is an overview. If you look at the previous post, in this version I have moved the streetside wall of the building in a few feet to widen the sidewalk. I have also widened the pedestrian plaza at the northwest end (lower right corner in this image). This would take another couple of parking spaces away from the lot. (Before anybody complains about the loss of parking, I should note that the metered spaces along Milwaukee adjacent to the building are rarely used.) I have added a bus shelter for the stop that currently exists here, and several amenities to make the space more inviting. And since it's Earth Day, I went ahead and threw a green roof on there.

First, the section southeast of the store entrance. This posed the biggest problem before, because it's such a long blank wall. Here I have moved the wall back about five feet but left the display windows jutting out to the sidewalk.The triangular shape next to the window is a translucent glass-block atrium window, beside that is a walk-up window serving as a coffee & news kiosk. Above is an LED news ticker displaying headlines. I have added some cafe tables and landscaping to break up the monotony, along with pedestrian-level streetlights. Out of frame to the left (but not included in the model anyhow), I thought that perhaps the last window could serve as a walk-up pharmacy counter.

Now to the northwest. Right outside the entrance, a flier kiosk where neighborhood residents can post notices. More cafe tables, and a group of outdoor chessboard tables. Elotes cart still in tow.

And finally, the view from the northwest. Here we see a small fountain surrounded by benches, a new covered bus shelter (not CTA-standard, but a lot nicer-looking) and more pedestrian-level lighting.

And that's what I've got, any comments are greatly appreciated.


  1. Nice mix of exterior elements, especially the reasonable number of well-located bike racks. I wish that more businesses and parks would have a kiosk for local info posting. With trees, benches and a covered bus shelter, this is a winner.

    BTW, lack of useable bike racks is one of my big annoyances with Walgreens stores in general.

  2. Agreed, though to be fair, Walgreens does do a better job of providing bike parking than, say, just about any neighborhood bank.

    Thanks for your comment!