A Wrigleyville Chamber of Commerce study indicates the neighborhood needs an additional 75 bars to solve a severe tavern-shortage crisis.

“We’re not surprised,” said John Browne, head of the Chamber. “We’ve said for years there aren’t enough places around here to drink, but the neighborhood groups complain there are too many. Well, what do they say now? These numbers don’t lie.”

Browne said the Chamber would use the results to press their case that the city should promptly relax the rules on new liquor licenses for the area.

“There are many spots where you can stand and spit — or vomit, if you will — without hitting a bar. That’s wrong. Those are the points where we should be allowed to step in and convert the space,” he said. “Way too much of this area is being wasted on businesses don’t serve booze. Do we really need a dry cleaner or two Subways on Clark? Wouldn’t those buildings make a great pub?”

From the May 2009 issue by Tom Evans