Let It Go . . Let It Go

By:  Diane Benjamin

Partial list of empty buildings in downtown Bloomington:

CII East

Front and Center and the building to the west

Former Clark and Barlow

Peoples Bank


Former Pantagraph building

Ensenberger Condos – 6 for sale on Zillow

A large variety of smaller spaces are also empty

Bloomington doesn’t need another one!

State Farm is being a good neighbor by paying to tear their building down.   They are much better neighbors than the two guys doing nothing with their properties while they wait for government to bail them out.  One of them is trying to get his hands on another property he will let sit – Bloomington knows who it is!

The Fire building has a lot of issues.  The small crowd wanting to stop it’s destruction needs to look at facts before trying to block demolition.  There is no private use for the building as evidenced by all the other vacant buildings and the inability to find a buyer.  Taxpayers don’t need another albatross!

Bloomington should be celebrating!

They now have proof empty buildings in downtown Bloomington have no value.  Merle Huff has a variety of now worthless buildings.  He can not prove in a court of law they are worth anything.  He will keep paying property taxes because he doesn’t want to admit the obvious.  Bloomington can prove demolition costs more than the zero value.

The millions invested downtown have been wasted.  Maybe someday it will be leveled and redeveloped.  For now:

let it go

Thanks State Farm, you are saving Bloomington from its government!






15 thoughts on “Let It Go . . Let It Go

  1. The city council members need a Dave Ramsey course. No budget=No Buy. This doesn’t qualify for the emergency fund either.

    The city is foolish to even try to thwart SF. It neighborly of SF to allow the city to have their feelings and brainstorming sessions about SF’s private property. However, have no doubt, they will leave Bloomington if the city prevents them from tearing it down. This will bite us all in the rear over the course of 10 years as SF moves out to more welcoming cities who will appreciate the new commerce. They do a lot for this town. They support our non-profits and schools. Keep going Bloomington and then we get empty houses and an empty 13-story building. But, yeah, we preserved history without preserving jobs and the economy. We made a building more important than the livelihood of our city.


  2. Like a GOOD NEIGHBOR! State Farm DOES care! As for the other downtown “EYESORES” Well, Tari AND Jen will save them along with gay baby seals.. Speaking of “Eyesores” the City? Has just finished the “improvements” to the rt 9 Regency intersection, is median and restrictive access to ANY business on the EAST side- GOODBYE DICKS! And yet the weeds on the NW corner are taller then the weeds in MOST county ditches. WAY TO GO JOHNEE! Just ANOTHER reason, she SHOULD be voted “ANTI business person” of the year! 30 mph on Hershey and NOW weeds on RT 9. Wonder what HER place in Hawthorne looks like??

    1. So nobody is going to go to dicks sporting goods because of the median that’s on regency drive? I know the government does a lot of stupid things but that’s kind of an asinine comment. Besides, that’s one of the worst intersections in town and it needed something to be done there

  3. I recall a conversation with Greg Koos one day when the issue was the Peoples Bank on the chopping block. I asked him why tear down a historic building when it could be converted and used for the library. Mr Koos argued that progress is necessary to get things done and it would be a good thing to tear the bank down and move on. Mr.Koos, was at the time head of the mclean county hysterical society , I mean the historical society,yet he advocated the destruction of the bank “for the good of the community” Now all of a sudden,Mr Koos is sitting there saying we need to keep the SF building which is in horrible shape? Leave it to a liberal to speak out of both sides of his mouth on the same issue. There is no difference between Peoples Bank and SF other than PB is in better shape physically than the SF building yet its the SF they are fighting to keep? I realize the PB is still standing , empty and devoid of use, but the two faced liberals are at it again , saying its “for the greater good” I really wish they would cut the crap out and let the business owners decide what to do, not the idiots in the council chambers.

  4. How’s the Empire TIF District going? What about the 2 TIF Districts in the downtown? Empty buildings, vacant lots but there are trees and flowers in the medians on Empire Street and Veterans Parkway as well as in downtown. Priorities???

  5. Imagine that! So, the more the City government gets involved with and throws money at Downtown, the worse it gets. Huh?! Well, apparently, to Tari, Jenn, Greg Koos, and the gang, this time is different. Did anyone see the Slantagraph coverage of Jenn’s listening event? She’s pictured writing on big pieces of paper like she’s leading a university student club. This is beyond ridiculous! State Farm has made up their mind. They are going forward with the demoing. The spokesperson made it clear they are moving forward. Why won’t State Farm sell it for $1 to the city and take a writeoff you ask? It’s not because State Farm is “greedy” and wants the (drop in the bucket for them) cash, but rather its because they know government will mess it up and it will be referred to as the “former State Farm Headquarters” in every future article, FOIA, or reference. In short, State Farm knows the City will mess it up, so they’re doing what they do best, risk mitigation. By the way, Tari and Jenn are just political grandstanding (and doing a horrible job at it, I might add). Downtown was bought up by a bunch of speculators that have lost their shirts and are now asking the local government to bail them out with tax dollars. Diane listed the bigger and more noticeable empty buildings, but there are more signs of trouble for the Downtown. 303 Main diagonally across from the arena is for sale, as is the old/abandoned Clay Dooley, and 616 N Main near the BCPA. I’m sure there’s more I missed. LoopNet doesn’t list all the properties for sale, but I found these three in about 30 seconds of skimming.

  6. Add on Bedtime Boutique, closing soon also For Sale signs at building next to it and the Tattoo Parlor at corner of Market and Madison.Satio Wine Bar closed end of March in Illinois House. The listening session was mostly an end result of a lot of questions and very little in current facts about the building , the sale that fell through, costs to maintain, code status on ADA, asbestos, mold, weight bearing load limits, tax assessments and liabilities.etc.
    The session was run like a 6th grade class with clapping, finger snapping and musical chairs. Again the paper on the wall the fullest was questions, because no one knew the answers, including the Ms Carrillo

    1. Thanks, Surena Fish! I knew that I was missing more vacancies, closures, and for sale signs. Thanks for filling in the blanks. An unnamed reader of this blog (not me) was blocked on a local Facebook page for daring to question the logic and wisdom of replacing Satio with the same exact business model. A wine bar didn’t work before when State Farm was in Downtown, but apparently, it will work now with more vacancies and for sale signs. More accumulated capital wasted. By the way, I liked Satio and went there more than a few times. Nothing against them or the newcomers to the space, but do they really think they can break even.

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