City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz plans to ask aldermen Monday to table a proposed ordinance that would have banned souvenir vendors from public sidewalks around Northwestern University’s athletic complex.

City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz plans to ask aldermen Monday to table a proposed ordinance that would have banned souvenir vendors from public sidewalks around Northwestern University’s athletic complex.

The ordinance, sought by NU officials and Evanston Police Chief Richard Eddington, had brought complaints from licensed peddlers that they were being pushed out of business in favor of a university concessionaire and from residents who said they enjoyed the opportunity to buy from the street vendors — at costs often lower those charged inside the stadium.

Both residents and the vendors disputed claims by the university and police that the peddlers were causing pedestrian safety issues around Ryan Field.

Bobkiewicz says he and the chief “remain concerned about safety issues” in the area and that the police will continue to enforce existing restrictions on peddling and ticket scalping.

He also says city an NU police will work to document conditions at football and basketball games this season and return to the council in the spring with a plan for possible city code revisions to enhance pedestrian safety.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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2 Comments

  1. Hooray for the Reasonableness of the City Manager!

    Now let’s focus on some of the serious issues facing our community.

    While I know our elected officials often want to address everyones’ issue they must be cognizant that in doing so there is less time and energy to address significant issues such as budget deficits, economic development, deteriorating infrastructure, etc.

    I hope the City Council will start to exercise the good judgment exhibited by our City Manager in limiting the number of relatively inconsequential issues that end up on their agenda.

    Now is the time we need our elected officials to step up and lead with good judgment and courage.

    1. Halloween pop-up store vs. sidewalk peddlers

      Gerald McGrew wrote: 

      "I hope the City Council will start to exercise the good judgment exhibited by our City Manager in limiting the number of relatively inconsequential issues that end up on their agenda.

       

      I wonder how Alderman Fiske can reconcile her position on the sidewalk peddlers with her position on the Halloween pop-up store on Sherman Ave.

       

      If I understand correctly, she thinks that sidewalk peddlers on Central St. are good (even though they compete with two stores on Central and the sellers inside the stadium), but she thinks that the Halloween store on Sherman is bad because it takes business away from the Hallmark store (which is, coincidentally, across the street from her store).

      Would the Halloween store be more acceptable if the business were done on the sidewalk on Sherman Ave?   Would the peddlers on Central St. be less desirable if they conducted their business on Saturdays inside empty stores on Central or if they set up temporary stalls on the empty field at Central & Eastwood?

      Enquiring minds are puzzled by this apparent contradiction.

       

       

       

       

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