Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Power Lines

It certainly will be nice if downtown Carbondale and the rest of the city can get the powerlines buried underground sometime in the next year or too. It often seems as if the city power grid is so sensitive that a few drops of rain can shut the power down in a fairly large section of the city.

Monday, February 27, 2017

New Clothing Store

Noticed a new clothing store opened at 201 West Walnut in the group of storefronts behind Phoenix Cycle. So new all it has in the window is an Open sign. Glancing through the window, it looks focused on athletic wear and sneakers, though of the casual and streetwear variety, rather than athletic wear for the serious athlete.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

School For Sale

I noticed that the old Royal Knight Inn on the west side of town, which has served as an outpost of a Caribbean medical school for the past couple of years, has gone up for sale. I guess the revenue for the medical students didn't cover the cost of the building.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Wither Mike Bost

Have seen this flyer posted on a number of phone poles and other locations in downtown Carbondale this week. 

Tuesday, February 21, 2017


Looks like the city council will be looking at adjusting signage ordinances to allow businesses to use more streamers and pennants and some use of inflatables and air dancers, which I thought were already allowed in town since I have seen them used off and on in town over the years. Also bemused by the fact that the plan is to add an amendment to the current ordinance, rather than just rewriting the original one and adopting it. This is why so many communities have laws that make no sense in today's world. It is easier to add another layer of rules to the ones we already have than it is to rewrite the existing ones.

"The Carbondale Planning Commission will meet at 6 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 22 in the City Council chambers. Among items on the agenda will be a request from the Chamber for a text amendment relating to certain types of prohibitive signs.

This text amendment is the result of a sub-committee of the commission which included Chamber representatives as well.

This action would allow businesses to use streamers and pennants and would allow for some uses of inflatables and "air dancers."

Monday, February 20, 2017

Mat Kaplan to Host Eclipse

If you wake up early in the morning on Saturday or Sunday and listen to WSIU, you likely catch Planetary Radio. Mat Kaplan, the host of the program for the past 15 years, will host eclipse events at SIUC on the 21st. Should expect some promotion of the university and the event on the show over the next few months.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Architectural Design Standards

From a press release from the city. Looks as if the architectural design standards will be discussed the evening of March 1. Will be interested to see if the city puts any enforcement measures in place eventually or if these will remain recommendations. One way for the city to have buildings meet the standards is to make getting a loan from the revolving loan fund contingent on the buildings meeting the standards.

The City of Carbondale will host an open house on Wednesday, March 1 to discuss the newly developed architectural design standards for downtown Carbondale.
Dozens of comments were generated at a community meeting in October regarding the kinds of materials, colors, architectural details and other building features citizens feel are best suited for Carbondale.
This process was initiated by City Council in June as part of the Downtown Master Plan. The goal is to expand the City’s minimum design standards which currently consist of building height, size, setbacks and other general characteristics.
The open house will be held at the Old Train Depot (121 S. Illinois Ave.) from 4-7 p.m

Vision Placard

Following up on yesterday's post, most experts I have read agree that if you have goals, you are much more likely to accomplish them if you post them where you can see them on a regular basis.

The city worked on residential areas a few years ago by enforcing zoning ordinances on mobile homes much more strictly than it had been. Most of the mobile homes in residential areas in town were put there almost 50 years ago during a time of booming enrollment, lax zoning and shortages of housing. The homes were not designed to still be in use 50 decades later and many have deteriorated significantly.

Improvements to downtown in recent months included installing additional bike racks and removing decaying trees along main streets with plans to replace them later this year. Also the demolition of the mold infested Holiday/Horizon Inn and the new Casey's going up across the street.

Small steps, but steady ones.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Monday, February 13, 2017

Shadow Fest

Apparently Carbondale is calling all of the celebration surrounding the upcoming eclipse :  Shadowfest  Certainly better than "Eclipsy McEclipseface":

The City of Carbondale is excited to announce “Shadow Fest” as the official name for the solar eclipse street festival.
More than 100 votes were submitted online and dozens of original festival names were posted on social media, thanks to a community-wide poll conducted by The Southern Illinoisan.
The three-day festival will be held in downtown Carbondale August 19-21. It will feature arts, crafts, food, live entertainment and more.
The total solar eclipse will reach its greatest point of totality just south of Carbondale on August 21.
For more information about the solar eclipse, visit www.carbondaleeclipse.com or call (618) 529-4451.

Friday, February 10, 2017


Normally the city has pulled down all the Christmas decorations in downtown Carbondale by this time but the memorial statute put up at the beginning of the season remains. Wonder if this mean the city plans to leave it up year round in order to add something unique to downtown year round?

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Academic Calendar

I got the date wrong for the start of the Fall semester SIUC in yesterday's post. According to the calendar for Fall 2017, the fall semester starts on the 21, the same day as the eclipse. 

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Eclipse and SIUC Start Date

The much ballyhooed solar eclipse takes place on August 21. According to the Academic Calendar classes at SIUC start on August 21. Talking with people who were looking for a place to stay during the eclipse festivities, almost every hotel room within about 100 miles is booked for several days prior to the eclipse and those still available in town want $500 per night for a room.

We will have an estimated  30,000-50,000 people in town for the eclipse, plus families moving students in for the start of classes the day after the eclipse. Interim Chancellor Brad Colwell was supposed to make a statement regarding what, if anything, the University would do to adjust for this but I have not found anything in his messages and the University's academic calendar still lists August 22 as the start of classes.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Super Bowl Weekend Crackdown

The C'dale Police cracked down on drunken drivers over the Super Bowl weekend but doesn't seem they saw any great increase in alcohol related infractions. There was one DUI and i citation for illegal transportation of alcohol. There were other citations but none alcohol related so not sure if the additional arrests were worth the extra effort. certainly did not see the amount of alcohol related violations the city saw during Polar Bear weekend.

Monday, February 6, 2017

New Home Buyer Seminar

Carbondale is still about 70% rental property. The city is working to slowly increase the percentage of home owners with various loans and programs, including this seminar this Saturday, sponsored by the Carbondale Neighborhood Action Group and the Egyptian Board of Realtors aimed at potential new home buyers"

The Carbondale Neighborhood Action Group is teaming up with the Egyptian Board of Realtors to host a free home buyer seminar on Saturday, February 18.

The event will be held at the Carbondale Public Library from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. The library is located at 405 W. Main St. Realtors, mortgage lenders, home inspectors and title companies will discuss a variety of topics associated with buying a home. This includes selecting a relator, finding the right home, selecting a lender, home inspections, contingencies and post-purchase maintenance.

Lunch will be provided to all attendees and light refreshments will be available throughout the seminar. Activities for kids will also be available. This event is free, but registration is strongly encouraged. To sign up, visit


For more information, contact Daniel Presley at (626) 487-9747 or CarbondaleHomeBuyer@gmail.com.

Southern Illinois Pharaohs

Sign on the side of the old school on North Oakland promoting it as the future home of the Southern Illinois Pharaohs.  Not sure why the designer opted to go with a skull motif in the logo. Maybe it goes along with the other team logos in the league?

One problem I see with this location is the lack of parking. The Pharaohs's gym is at the west end of the complex and most of the parking is located at the east end. Will attendees be willing to park there and then walk the couple of blocks to the Pharaoh's gym? There is also the potential for a lot of congestion in the area as the streets there are not well designed for heavy amounts of traffic.

Friday, February 3, 2017

There's an Eclipse Coming

In case you missed it, the Carbondale area has a solar eclipse coming this August.  The city made this video looking at how some local businesses are preparing to greet it.  I understand the asking price on some of the remaining rooms in town is $500 a night.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

More Polar Bear

Sent to me by a reader of the blog, this shot was taken showing a house on S. Poplar mid afternoon on Polar Bear Saturday. According to the sender, there was property damage as well as public urination.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Town Square Lighting

According to a tweet I received from City Manager Gary Williams, the city is looking into lighting the Town Square year round, rather than just at Christmas. Would certainly brighten the place up and make it more friendly at night.