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How Many Coffee Shops are Too Many at Damen El



When we heard the news this week that Stan's Donuts was opening a shop across the street from Glazed and Infused we weren't surprised. It's not unusual for similar types of businesses to 'cluster together'. Santullo's and Piece Pizza have been almost side by side on North Avenue for a decade.

What struck us as unusual was the number of coffee shops you'll soon find right at the Damen El Stop at the corner of Damen & North Avenue. Five, count them five, businesses will soon be serving coffee right at the El stop. And if you throw in Big Star on Sundays, you can make it an even 6. Here's what you'll see this year:


1)Starbucks - located right at the corner of North and Damen - 1588 N. Milwaukee Avenue. Apparently a makeover is in the works. Stepping up their game perhaps.


2)Glazed and Infused - Inside of Francesca's Forno with a window opening directly onto Damen Avenue, Glazed and Infused serves coffee and doughnuts bright and early right across from the Damen Blue Line Stop. They also reopen to serve doughnuts late-night.


3)Le Colombe- Scheduled to open later this year. Le Colombe is moving in to the space directly next to the Damen El stop at 1552 N. Damen Avenue; previously the home of Greener Cleaner.


4)Cafe Transit - Cafe Transit is working with the CTA to open a coffee shop directly inside of the Damen El stop.


5)Stan's Donuts - As mentioned above, Stan's Donuts will be opening a Chicago location later this year in the Skewerz space also directly next to the Damen Blue Line El Stop.


Essentially Le Colombe, Cafe Transit and Stan's Donuts will be directly next to each other. Interesting to this writer who lives close to the Division Street Blue Line El stop. Know how many coffee shops we have at the Division Street Blue Line El stop? None.  Although there is a rumor on the street that Intelligentsia is moving in to the commercial space in the new rental building at Ashland and Division.

Currently, however, there are no coffee shops at the Division Street Blue Line El stop. With 100+ new renters being added to that location, you have to wonder why businesses are slow to move there ... and would prefer, instead, to jump into an area already heavily populated with a lot of competition.



Soon these 3 spaces (the Greener Cleaner, Damen El Stop and Skewerz space) will all be serving coffee.


Tell us what you think. Caffeine overload? Or ... the more the merrier?

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