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43 Responses to “What do you feel should be done with the old Kresge building after Monday’s fire?”

  1. bob

    soon i will be out of this assanine town, it really needs to get up with the times, its so far behind the the times its going to catch up with its self.

  2. Miriam St. Jean

    @soontobeoutofthisdump – don’t let the door hit you on the behind on your way out of town – you have much to learn……..

    @my2centsworth – agreed – the community has a lot to offer – people ARE speaking up, becoming more vocal, and elected officials are listening (they really have no choice )

    As to what to do with the building? That’s really Montenery’s decision – I’d hate to look at a new parking lot, but parking IS limited……..I love the suggestion of building something where the tweens and teens could go to get away from mom and dad and be with their friends – I’d also enjoy a “green space” with trees, benches, umbrellas; a place to sit, relax, have lunch and just enjoy the downtown area

    When all is said and done, though, the choice is Montenery’s – it’ll be interesting to see what they decide

  3. pcyphers

    I believe if the building has more damage then what it will be worth to fix it sadly to say for some but it should be torn down :( If it can be fixed and it worth more then getting it fixed them rebuild :)

  4. meme

    Well we don’t need another parking lot there is one there already. Or another restaurant,or another hair salon or cash advance,or clothing store,or nick nack store,or bar, or video store. None of these places are doing well as it is because we have enough of them already. We need something different!!! Something for young adults and teens.I am not a teen or young adult but I remember what down town was and the way I see it looks like it is just heading in a down hill direction. Every year new businesses open down there and try so hard to make it and no one goes downtown anymore. Us adults are the ones too busy to go out. The young adults and teens are board with nothing to do. They have money to blow while they are young! Attract them to downtown! I never understood why they took out the theatre that was the dumbest thing to do. What ever happend to friday night cruise night? All the muscle cars? Standing outside the theatre eating because you could actually buy food downtown past 9pm!! Hello everything closes at 5pm.Except the bars.Kids can’t go there. That is when most people are just getting home from the daily stuff. Who has the time to rush downtown to go shopping in an hour? I thought that candy store was a great idea to bad it was always closed after kids and parents got done for the day. I never even got to see it inside. They need something for the younger generations that is reasonably priced, interesting to kids, that is open at least till 10 or 11pm, and that can possibly open up a few more jobs for people too. We need more places like that. How about a dance club? We don’t have one of them that isn’t a BAR!! FOR young adults under 21! Maybe have karaoke on some nights. Food! Live music like open jam for anyone who wants to share there music for free. Kids would love it!! Just like the bars but without the alachol so they can have the fun too. They need something and I think the hardest thing is finding someone to start it. To just do it for our town and surrounding areas. There are so many talented young adults that do music and have bands. They would love a place to share it. And the art league could have some of there creative things around to for others to enjoy. I could see something like that really blossom into something.

  5. meme

    I think they should rebuild it into one large open building and make it into a young adult club. There is nothing for teens or young adults to do around here except for hang out at Wal-Mart and Kroger and get into trouble. We need something that is going to draw people back downtown. It needs to be something that they can pay for too. Not something that is too expensive. Our town really needs that. Maybe have game rooms,dancing with up to date music that the kids like now,food, and whatever else. We need something of intrest so they will get out a little and socialize with each other and not have to go to Colubus to do it.The only problem is who is going to run it. But that could open up more jobs too…….

  6. Jim

    I got an idea make a dirt road out of it this county seems to be very fond of them it will be a reminder how silly it is to still have dirt roads in the year of 2011. get with the times people.

  7. Lady Blue

    I have to agree with Dennis. I remember several times the Curtis Hotel and other merchants down town complaining because of us teens cruising. Look at our youths today. What do they do now? They hang at Wal-Mart but give them a few years and that will be stopped. Us teens kept down town alive back in the day but look what the down town business owners have done. They ran us all out and now they can’t figure out why they can’t keep business on Main Street. That “Golden Gate” that all of us tax payers bought needs to be closed and plow the building’s down. Plow down all the businesses on Main Street and build a mall.

  8. Dennis

    Jacob, this town started dying long before economic and social changes. I’m far from a old timer and i know darn well what all was being said in the day. The chamber of commerse, MTV Police Dept. and most seniors wined about it and don’t give me crap about social spaces have moved cause you have know idea. This town needs bigger and better stores and or social kind of places that also cater to the younger generations not the old mom and pop stores of yesteryear that cater to only seniors. Thats where the local econamy would help make a comeback. Why can’t you freakin people understand that. Let go of some of that history crap and lets move on!!!

  9. Rosie

    To soontobeoutofthisdumptown: You can go, but the problem will be that you always have to take yourself along wherever you go. (It’s deep, but you’ll figure it out.)

    To others who post here: There, they’re and their are NOT interchangeable.

  10. bob

    if the whole site is torn down there would be room for bw3’s smokey bones kohl’s department store we need to put business in downtown to get people to come back downtown, and the list goes on, but they always seem to put the same things downtown, for intance another antique store or etc. i asure you it will be something dumb

  11. tisk

    I like and enjoy downtown Mt. Vernon….What is the problem with you folks who hate it??? You need to go elsewhere in other towns and see the mess they live in then you will be thankful for Downtown M.V.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  12. s

    I feel it should be turned into parking, with the Naz moving their nursing program downtown in the next few years it will make parking worse than ever with it’s Art program already their and COTC it will make downtown impossible. Yes the buildign has had a lot of MTV’s history in it but we can’t save something that is threating people and the buildings it is next to. A parking lot or even a parking garage would serve the community better whether the owners turn it in to one of these things or if they make a deal with MVNU for them to make a parking space.

  13. Kez

    I would like to see a parking deck be put up. MVNU will most likely purchase it though…as if they don’t own enough in Mount Vernon as it is. I just hope they don’t try to put up another fail store in downtown like they have been for years. Make more parking…expect more people. Business for those smalls shops will increase because of the easier access.

  14. Jacob

    Sounds like you are now one of the old-timers. Downtown’s fate has much more to do with broader economic and social changes and less to do with some mythical “old timers” who wanted to chase kids out of downtown. The center of commerce has moved–to other towns, to Coshocton Avenue, to the internet. And social spaces have moved as well. People can be entertained in their homes. Go across the country, and you will see towns of Mount Vernon’s size with the same downtown situations. Knocking down a building won’t fix anything.

  15. Diana

    I am sure the Nazarene College will buy it to make it into a parking lot……

  16. Dennis

    Level that sucker and take the rest of downtown with it! Downtown has been dead now for years. And why do i think that? Quite simple if you think about it. The downtown merchants and almost every old timer wanted this to be a retirement town and chased all the younger generations away cause they wanted those kids out of town. I remember Fri. and Sat. nites were packed and all of us kids were cruising and spending money back then. I personally won’t buy anything down there because i have never forgot that and i laugh everytime seeing most of them out of buisness now. Mt. Vernon has taken so much away from the youth and never gives them anything back. I say level all of main street cause thats all its good for aways.

  17. jd

    @H Joey re Westerville, I assume you want your city income tax to go from %1.5 to %2.0 and your property taxes to go from %1.6 to %2.3 then? Be glad we don’t have Westerville’s traffic and other suburban sprawl problems!

    I hope the owner restores the shell of the building, but I’m not holding my breath. :-(

  18. Jeremy

    I believe respectfully that if Mount Vernon is the most run down town that you have been in….you should get out more. I’m very sorry about your animosity toward Subway and I’m sure that the planners will take the subway pandemic under advisement. Although not Redwood Trees, we do enjoy many trees on the square and all throughout Main Street. I want to take this opportunity to thank all of our small business owners, especially downtown. You continue to make this town great!

  19. my2centsworth

    I would like to see a $1.00 movie theatre put back in our town. We used to have one. & it was great. Now we have to drive all the way to Mansfield.

    To: “soontobeoutofthisdumptown”…. you sound like a unappreciative person! Take a drive to cols. downtown along 5th ave. or certain downtown areas of Mansfield, & look at their delapitated buildings, trash all over the street, & slums. It sits that way year after year after year. The city does nothing to tear it down, not to mention the rats it populates.

    Mt Vernon is a very clean city! The townspeople speak out, the city listens to us, & takes our words seriously. If something goes on long enough, it is soon handled.
    I wish all complainers, & unappreciative people like you WOULD hurry up & go somewhere else. Theres alot of empty homes in Cols. & mansfield you could live in.
    Their even air conditioned all yr. round for your comfort.

  20. shay smith

    I hope the building can be saved. Yes it’s going to cost some money. But between insurance and hopefully some donations, and grants it can be rebuilt using the outer shell which is still structurally sound. The Kresge building holds so many memories for so many people. Todays youth has been deprived of what we had back then. Walmart can not even come close to the Kresge. A downtown store similar to Kresges would help the students at both universities.

  21. Ron

    How about a BW3s it is always packed wich in turn could bring some much needed buisness in to down town? I’m sure that there is alot of red tape for something like this but it could be very beneficial to the local merchants and to all involved.

  22. John

    It saddens me that our downtown is losing its identity. In the last 20 years, it’s lost the Colonial Cinema, Golden City, the Ohio Restaurant, JC Penney, the sewing center, and even the Corner Grill, just to name of a few things. But while I am sad, I also believe that the downtown is developing a new identity. With MVNU and COTC having campus extensions/branches in downtown, that identity is one of culture and education. Sips has done a great job of filling the space left by Colonial Menswear, and seems like it has always belonged. The two antique shops, along with the Woodward restoration and the reopened Alcove keep us connected to our local heritage.

    The MVFD and surrounding FD’s did a fantastic job of fighting and containing this fire. I absolutely hate to lose a landmark like the Kresge, but the building is already lost. Tearing it down seems to be the only viable option at this point. I would like to see parking added for the two colleges’ students and staff. But I will leave that decision to the owner, and hope that Mayor Mavis and the city council stay out of the decision-making process, since it’s not their decision to make.

  23. Justin

    In response to Emma. Yes there are building codes when ‘non-residential’ construction is involved. The state codes are in effect and are substantial enough to protect new business construction. The problem with residential building codes and enforcement is that it always ends up about the money/fees. They always overstep. Always. A basic non facist building code would be fine. You show me one somewhere! Till then you should read up on state building codes as they apply to non-government , non-residential , non farm buildings.

  24. jcs

    Actually we do have building codes. Any new building has to be designed according to the Ohio Building Code and the drawings must be stamped by an architect, then they must be reviewed and permitted by the state of Ohio Dept. of Commerce before construction can begin. Also, any existing building that is making any structural changes and/or changing its occupancy is also required to submit drawings, stamped by an architect, to the state to be approved. One problem is that a lot of people try to do work “under the radar” without getting the proper permits because they can be pricey. (I am not saying that the owner of this particular building ever did such a thing. Just that I know it happens in Knox County quite a bit). I completely agree that the owners of the building should maintain them better. But I also know that it can be extremely expensive to do so and not everyone who owns one of these buildings has the means to keep them in tip top shape. Perhaps all the people who constantly complain about the condition of the buildings should set up a fund to help with there maintenance or something else that would actively help the situation instead of just complaining about it.

  25. Liz

    Tear it down, plant some grass and trees and install some metal permanent picnic tables so that the adjacent arts building and there students and faculty have a nice break area.

  26. Emma

    It should be torn down and either rebuilt, properly.. Oh wait! We don’t have any building codes. Here’s the plan: building codes, building codes, building codes! After that majority to all of downtown will need torn down or completely refitted. Historical is nice, but you have to maintain it! If you’re not going to do so, you need to get rid of it. If your teenage daughter were driving her car and got a flat, wouldn’t you get that fixed or would you expect her to drive around on that and not get hurt/hurt someone else? Seriously, that is what leaving dilapidated buildings up is like. The building owners saying “we care about our buildings” is ridiculous!! If you really cared fire safety laws would have been followed and items and miscellaneous other stuff would not have blocked entry into the building’s basement. Even if it wasn’t their stuff and it was the renters, it’s their responsibility to ensure the building is safe and it is their right to tell the renters to keep their stuff stored in an organized fashion.

  27. Jacob

    It’s not our decision to make, Jack, but an owner of an investment property doesn’t make decisions in a vacuum. He needs to take into consideration what his potential customers want.

  28. Rose

    Make affordable parking…or tear out some of the crappy streetscaping for parking! It’s too bad the elderly can’t park near some of the eateries and walk there. Same for other people with “walking issues”. It’s turning into a downtown Mansfield. Seriously, does anyone go downtown to see the streetscape? I sure don’t! I hate shopping at Malls…so my downtown (?) shopping is at Interchurch.

  29. TJE

    soon to be out of this dump town needs to realize no town is perfect if you find that utopia let us know otherwise I believe the building the property of someone whos hard earned dollar payed for. End of question…..small town america has it ups and downs but most are proud owners of there properties whether rich or poor….hope soon to bout of this dump town puts there money where there mouth is someday….it takes contributions to make utopia not crap and empty pockets!!!!

  30. J Hoey

    The owner of the building should make a sound decision on what he see’s and based on the information that has been passed to him by the various agencies. Also the city of Mt.Vernon and the store front owner’s could take some lessons from Westerville on how to revive downtown and keep it alive.You can drive over there any part of the night up until around 11:00 pm and you will see that the streets and the some of the business’s are still open.

  31. Judy Ford

    First let me commend the fire department response time and extreme diligence in fighting this fire, keeping it contained to that one building is quite a feat. Having been a past business owner in the area my take on the empty space downtown is not so much the most eye pleasing solution but the mostly practical, in my opinion. Everyone has tried and tried all kinds of things to draw people to the downtown area for years with not much success. Dan Emmett Day festivals, market days, car shows, Christmas walks opera house tours, home tours, parades, quilt shops, clothing stores, shoe stores, restaurants & diners, bead shops, sewing & craft shops, repair shops, jewelry stores, cinema, ice cream ..candy stores and the list goes on. The idea of making them all downtown condos would be very expensive. Rebuilding a building to equal the quality and looks of the historic stores and buildings isn’t a very profitable idea..unless you have that money tree growing in your backyard. If the college is able to utilize the existing art gallery building and the other one that they have in renovation it will need parking. I think that a spot to park and attend the classes offered by the Nazarene University and COTC, who are willing to make a home in our downtown, would be the best answer. It will bring more dollars to the area than anything I can think of. Sad that the building was lost .. but life goes on and we as a community need the youthful diversity these types of schools can bring to us.

  32. proud of mount vernon

    I don’t understand how you can feel that the downtown is run down. The buildings look atractive & well-kept. Hope you don’t have to stay here too much longer-don’t want you to suffer. I have lived here all of my life & I admit that the downtown is not like it used to be, but this is true of most towns. The Kresge building will unfortunately probably have to be demolished-would be pretty expensive to rebuild. It was a great store in its day & the lunch counter & waitresses were the best!

  33. soontobeoutofthisdumptown

    Clearly the building needs to be dozed to the ground (much like the rest of the downtown area). The downtown (and rest of the town) of Mt. Vernon is the most run down, sad and pitiful place I have ever been. No sense in even suggesting things that city planners could consider to make this town semi-livable, because, as we see, they feel that nothing is more important that a 4th Subway in a town with a 3 mile radius. This place is a joke. That fire, and subsequent demolition of the building, offers a much needed improvement for the town. Plant some trees. There’s an idea.

  34. Jack

    Since America is still supposedly a free country, it seems that this should be a decision to be made by the owner(s) – not the city or MV News readers.

  35. Jacob

    Ideally, I hope the shell can be saved and a new building built inside it. I am not an engineer, so I don’t know if this is possible. But something I read recently indicated that the shell is still structurally sound. I’m also not a real estate agent, so I don’t know what the commercial viability of such a building would be. And, finally, I’m neither the owner nor the owner’s insurance agent, so I don’t know whether money would be available to do such a thing. So, from an outsider’s perspective, I hope that the building can be saved and restored so that the streetscape of the city is unaltered.