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Doughs Guys Bakery gets concession to open shop in commuter train depot

A new morning café stop is ready to set up shop inside Palos Park’s Metra train depot.

The Village Council Monday unanimously approved a commercial sublease with Doughs Guys Bakery to operate the vendor station inside the train station, 123rd Street and 82nd Avenue.

The agreement was originally to begin April 30, but Village Manager Rick Boehm asked village commissioners to move up the effective date to March 30, as he was optimistic the bakery could take over the concession stand by the end of this month.

That would be good news for commuters since the 10-year-old station has been without a food vendor for the past few weeks after Palos Perk Café ceased operations there.

“We kind of had an abrupt ending with our last lease [with Palos Perk Café] when the concessionary walked off the job at the station,” Boehm said. “We were fortunate enough to find a willing vendor in Doughs Guys Bakery.”

The bakery, which is headquartered in Palos Heights inside the former Baumann’s Bakery storefront, 12248 S. Harlem Ave., also operates the concession stand at two Metra stations in Orland Park and one in Oak Forest.

“We have some knowledge [of Doughs Guys], and they come recommended by those agencies,” Boehm said. “We’ve worked with them before at events and they’ve always done very well for themselves and for their customers.”

Doughs Guys has been a vendor at previous Palos Park events, including the Autumn in the Park and the Concert in the Park festivals, Boehm noted.

The bakery outlet in Palos Park’s train depot will be open from 5 to 9 a.m. Monday through Friday and will sell a variety of sweet rolls, coffees, hot chocolate, fruit, juices, bottled water and soda, according to a menu provided by the village. Sweet rolls will be priced at $1 while coffee is to be priced at $1.50 for a 12-ounce cup and $2 for a 20-ounce cup. Fruit will be $1 and soda and juices $2.

“Doughs Guys are great,” Commissioner Nicole Milovich-Walters said. “I’ve dealt with them a number of times at our events and I’m hoping this will be very successful because I do like the idea that we have this available to our commuters.”

“They’re going to be a reputable vendor for us,” Commissioner James Pavlatos said. “They have wonderful looking pastries and muffins. I think they are going to be a nice addition.”

Unlike the previous lease with Palos Perk, the tenant will not need to pay the village to operate inside the train depot, Boehm said.

“The last time we entered into an agreement we did put in a fee to be remitted to the village, but we found that margins are small and we were having a hard time finding a vendor, so this does not have any money coming back to the village.”

Instead, Doughs Guys will assist in cleaning the waiting area and restrooms on days when the depot’s normal maintenance crew is not working, Boehm said.

Past Metra station tenants have served lunch and dinner, but Boehm said as of right now Doughs Guys will only have morning hours.

Also Monday, the Village Council also voted unanimously to amend Palos Park code to prohibit off-street parking and parking garages as the primary use of a property in residential districts.

“Basically the idea here is that if your neighbor across the street is commercial, they can’t buy the property [next to you] in a Residential-1-A district and knock down the home and now there is parking,” Palos Park Mayor John Mahoney said. “There was a little bit of an anomaly in our code and we’re just trying to clear it up.”

“The ordinance up until this point stated that if somebody sold a house someone could buy that house and turn it into a parking lot,” Pavlatos added. “Some of these ordinances are so old that we’re just trying to go through them and clean up the outdated ones.”

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