Normal approves new Trail East plan, potential mural removal

The Town of Normal is moving forward with the development of a new 5-story building despite costing more tax increment financing money as well as another potential fee to preserve a mural.

Monday night the council voted unanimously to approve a the new development plan for the mixed used 5-story building that would now include the property at 106 E Beaufort St. The location currently holds Windy City Wieners, though Mayor Chris Koos said the restaurant will rent a space within the new building.

The addition of the Windy City Wieners property as well as rising costs for certain materials like steel are what the developers cited as taking the project from $29.2 million to $30 million. To compensate for the extra costs the developer asked for more TIF money from the town.
Mayor Chris Koos said that most of building has been spoken for by future tenants through letters of intent.

“By virtue of the fact that 70% of the office spaces are pre-leased, I think that speaks pretty strongly to the desire of that property,” he said.

The council also approved paying for the mural on 104 E Beaufort St. to be removed and relocated to help ensure the Trail East project can move forward despite legal action from the murals artists.

City Manager Pamela Reece said even if it is demolished, like the town wants, it will not be the last mural in Uptown.

“The design team talk about that walkway through, from Beaufort sidewalk back to the parking lot to the north of that area, you saw the graphic of that area screaming for some art,” Reece said. “So we do think they are going to be other opportunities for art along the way.”

During the meeting Reece said she does not believe they will have to move it but if they are required to it could cost the town between $56,000 to $81,000 but that the town will try to be reimbursed by the former tenants responsible for the mural if they relocate it.

Stephanie Rodriguez

Stephanie Rodriguez

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