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New food incubator project ready to break ground in Chicago’s East Garfield Park

The development would replace a vacant lot next to the Green Line

An innovative food incubator project known as ‘The Hatchery Chicago’ has been cleared to start construction in East Garfield Park. Designed to support up-and-coming entrepreneurs and bring new economic investment to Chicago’s West Side, the 67,000-square-foot development has been granted a foundation-only permit to begin work at a vacant lot next to the Green Line at Lake Street and Kedzie Avenue.

When complete, the Hatchery will house between 75 and 100 entrepreneurs as well as provide other support services. The Lohan Anderson-designed building will provide access to food-grade work spaces including shared kitchens and 56 private production areas. The project also features spaces for co-working, mentoring programs, events, and an expanded Garfield Park Neighborhood Market.

 Google Street View
135 N. Kedzie Ave.

The $30 million Hatchery project is a joint venture between nonprofits Industrial Council of Nearwest Chicago and Accion Chicago with funding coming from a variety of public and private sources—including donations by food industry giants such as Conagra and Kellogg. Last month, the City of Chicago’s Community Development Commission authorized $7 million in TIF money and agreed to sell the vacant, city-owned lot at Lake Street and Kedzie Avenue to the Hatchery’s developers for $1.

The project is expected to bring 150 new jobs to the East Garfield Park neighborhood in its first year and up to 900 jobs within five years. With shovels cleared to dig in, the West Side facility should open its doors by the fall of 2018.

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