Jul 30, 2014

Date Set for Downtown Eyesore Demo

City announces scheduled date for demolition of 420 S. Washington St. to make way for new North Central College park and entryway.

Date Set for Downtown Eyesore Demo

On Jan. 19, it all comes crumbling down. 

The well-known downtown Naperville eyesore at 420 S. Washington St. will be demolished on Saturday, Jan. 19 to make way for a brand new entryway to the North Central College campus, according to the city of Naperville.

During the Dec. 18 Naperville City Council meeting, North Central College announced plans to purchase the vacant one-story commercial building and develop the property into a public park. 

City Manager Doug Krieger awarded a contract to demolish the building, which dates back to the 1930s, as well as release a $235,000 lien the city had placed on the property. A lien was imposed to cover property-maintenance fines that had been levied over the years after the property had been in foreclosure and vacated, according to North Central College.

Crews are scheduled to begin work at 7 a.m. on Jan. 19 to remove the building, which will likely take one day to demolish, according to the city. In anticipation for the demolition, electronic message boards that count down the days until demolition have been placed on the property.

“We’re extremely excited to move forward with the demolition of this building to increase open space in the community,” said Bill Novack, Director of the City’s Transportation, Engineering and Development Business Group in a press release. “By increasing open space in the downtown area, all of Naperville will benefit.” 

Flaggers will be directing traffic on Washington Street, which will remain open during the demolition. According to the city, traffic disruptions are expected to be brief.

In recent years, city offcials decided to board up the builing for safety reasons after it was broken into numerous times. In 2009, city staff inspected the integrity of the building and found several code violations, but nothing presenting imminent danger, according to the city.

The more than 80-year-old building has seen a number of different businesses come and go through the decades such as a dance studio, bike shop and comic book store, most recently.

For more information, visit  www.naperville.il.us.

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