The accident happened at Barnard’s Schwinn Cyclery at 6109 West North Avenue at around 10:20 p.m.
According to their website, this is Oak Park’s oldest family owned business, serving the community since 1911.
The owner said a police officer was in fact on patrol and parked at the gas station next to the store. The owner said police told him the driver fell asleep at the wheel as he walked down North Avenue and made his way to the building. This driver was taken to hospital with unknown injuries.
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No one was inside at the time. Police said the driver, David Cross, 44, of Elmwood Park, was taken to Loyola Medical Center for treatment and then turned over to Oak Park Police.
The man was charged with drunk driving, failing to reduce speed to avoid an accident and not having proof of car insurance.
The owner said some of the bikes and merchandise at the front of the store are unlikely to be salvageable. It’s a devastating blow for this family business just before the holiday season.
“It’s very devastating,” said Jeff Hajduke, vice president. “It’s always hard to understand how something so bad can happen … It’s just crazy … I mean, it’s just a matter of the toss.”
This is a big blow to a family business that has been in existence for 111 years. The bike shop managed to stay open during the pandemic, but now faces a different recovery with a car collapsing the building.
Hajduke says there has been a lot of speeding on the part of drivers on North Avenue for some time now. He hopes the city leaders can do something about it.
“It’s like a drag strip from Ridgeland to Austin… and there’s not much I can do about it,” Hajduke said.
Some of the bikes and merchandise at the front of the store are probably unrecoverable.
“May be able to pick up some parts of it… but that’s if we can fit in,” Hajduke said.
He is also confident that this shop will be back up and running soon once they settle this damage and he wants all customers to know that they will still meet their needs for all their holiday shopping.
“We’re going to be here somewhere in Oak Park… we have to face the holiday season… we have people who have layaways and we have to fill that need,” Hajduke said.
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