CHICAGO­-Separate fitness club operators, undeterred by glum economic news, have recently announced plans for two new fitness clubs in the Lincoln Park and Lake View north side neighborhoods of Chicago. The companies see these neighborhoods as natural expansion areas, since they are characterized by a relatively young and affluent population.

New York’s upscale Equinox fitness club has signed a 15-year lease for 40,000 sf at 1750 N. Clark St. in the former Bigsby & Kruthers building across from Lincoln Park. This will be the 15th Equinox location, but only its second outside of New York state. Equinox also plans to expand in other out-of-state markets such as Los Angeles and Pasadena, CA. Bill Platt, principal and president of Access Realty Group, is developer of the project.

Fitness Formula Ltd. will open a 20,000-sf Multiplex Club at Plaza 32, 3232 N. Halsted St., in East Lake View in summer 2002. This will mark the seventh location for the Chicago-based, privately owned network of urban and suburban health and fitness facilities. Two of its high profile locations include the Gold Coast at 1030 N. Clark St. and Union Station Multiplex Health & Fitness Center at 444 W. Jackson Blvd.

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