Architectural salvage: one out, one in.


Nature — at least in its urban, mercantile form — evidently really does abhor a vacuum .We told you a few weeks ago that architectural salvage purveyor Renovation Source had gone out of business. But lovers of hugely expensive reclaimed building parts and other design treasures [or trash, depending on your perspective] can breathe easy now that Revival has moved into a space at the corner of Southport and Irving Park.

This is actually Revival’s third location, and you can only hope the cliche about third chances and charm comes through for the shop. It opened in 2003 in the Garfield Market complex [a great idea for a retail destination that hasn’t proved to be much of a destination]. Mark Steinke, who had previously managed Salvage One, the first really comprehensive salvage source in Chicago, was the front man for the operation, although he was always kind of cagey about who actually owned the place.
Early in 2004, the store moved into a retail space in the same building as the Chicago Illuminating Company, a flashy new event space owned by restaurateur/ club owner/ design dude Jerry Kleiner in a former Com Ed plant. Given the appearance of Kleiner’s weird pieces of metal furniture and elements [Kleiner has great instincts for the kind of theatrical drama that makes for a dynamic restaurant space, but you probably wouldn’t one of his rolled steel club chairs in your family room] among the salvaged pieces, it seemed obvious that Kleiner had a piece of the business. And although the shop looked great, the location was apparently just as bad as it had been over on the west side.

Now, with its move to the northern edge of “Hot Southport,” it’s presumably in a place where its potential customers are more likely to pass by and stop in, although the already astronomical prices aren’t likely to be any lower, so you’ve gotta hope a lot of those passersby have big credit lines. And the added benefit: the store no longer seems to be required to show Jerry Kleiner’s wares.

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