Find tour dates and live music events for all your favorite bands and artists in your city! Get concert tickets, news and more!

City Negotiates Sale Of Riviera Theater


The city of Chicago wants to negotiate a deal with Riviera Theater owner Louis
Wolf, who has been branded a slumlord for refusing to fix his buildings, to buy the 85-year-old building, reports the Chicago Sun-Times. Jam Productions
presently holds a long-term operating lease and books about 40 concerts a year at
the 2,300-seat venue.

But there's a caveat: if Wolf doesn't agree to the terms, the city could force a sale, the
paper reports. The Community Development Commission, which advises the City
Council, has already approved the city's plan, which is to get the Riviera away from
Wolf and then find a new owner who will upkeep the building.

"We're just concerned that the building hasn't had any investment in a long time,''
said Peter Scales, spokesman for the city's Department of Planning and
Development.

According to a staff report, the building has been cited for "numerous code
violations,'' which Wolf, who has spent time in jail for arson and tax evasion, has
ignored.

Jam is a potential obvious buyer, but the city has to put out competing bids. Scales
told the paper the company has expressed interest, but Jam co-owner Arny Granat
declined to comment if the company will make an offer.

Alderman Helen Shiller says the building has improved under Jam's
management.