LA Fitness, 1618 Sherman Ave.

A gym in downtown Evanston no longer fits the business plan of LA Fitness.

The workout facility, on top of Target on Sherman Avenue, will close its doors at the end of business on April 15.

While gyms nationwide have been hit hard by on-and-off restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Gabriel Ojeda, assistant manager at the Evanston facility, tells Evanston Now that business has been going well locally.

However, he says a corporate decision was made “not to renew the lease” for the Evanston gym.

“It’s just unfortunate,” he says.

Ojeda adds that LA Fitness is opening two other facilities in Chicago, so the overall business is picking up.

Memberships in the Evanston club will be honored at all LA Fitness and Esporta Clubs in Illinois (other than Signature Clubs).

Ojeda says the 15-20 employees at the Evanston facility will be offered positions at other LA Fitness gyms.

According to Wikipedia, LA Fitness has more than 700 clubs in the U.S. and Canada.

Jeff Hirsh joined the Evanston Now reporting team in 2020 after a 40-year award-winning career as a broadcast journalist in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Join the Conversation


  1. The commercial rent in Evanston is very high and there’s the fact that many residents , in the suburb of Chicago, can easily afford their own home gyms. Also there is obviously the devastation of the pandemic

  2. I’m in shock! It’s a location with a pool and there are hardly any locations with pools. I go there twice weekly.

  3. This is very sad news 😢. The Skokie location closed a few years back. No replacement coming online. The clubs that remain are in need of remodeling/update. The hand writing is clearly on the wall. A long-time member.

  4. I liked Evanston LA fitness because it was large with many weights and machines and had a lot of space. They also had volleyball nets available on Wednesdays and Sundays which was fun too. All the Evanston shops near there are closing down and it’s definitely due to rent and the pandemic.

  5. There were locker break- ins weekly. Pan handlers outside the entrance and in the foyer. Corporate decided this location wasn’t in tune with their desired demographics.

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