Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Realtor Home Rule Mailer

 Received a direct mail postcard from Illinois REALTORS arguing against a vote for Carbondale to retain home rule. According to the orgainzation's website, it assisted in defeating 5 home rule referendums back in 2018, though it did assist in pushing through sales taxes.  Appears that it does not oppose taxes, just taxes that cause its membership to have spend more time and money. Here are their reasons for opposiing home rule:

We oppose the increased debt for local governments that Home Rule allows.

We oppose higher property taxes without voter approval that comes with Home Rule.

We oppose the additional regulations, red tape and fees on real estate transactions that Home Rule authority allows.

We oppose possible new and excessive property inspections and fees which Home Rule authority can impose.

Monday, September 26, 2022

Vape Shops

 Two more vape shops have opened on South Illinois. Hollywood 22 opened in the old Pag's location a few months ago and Vegas Vape opened last week in the old El Greco location.. Appears the proprietors hope to make them attractive by hanging the "Hollywood" and "Vegas" names on them instead of names referencing their southern Illinois location,  such as 618 Vape does.

At one time, we had about half a dozen dedicated vape shops in Carbondale  but most closed after 1-2 years. Rather suprising the pair opened up across the street from each other but maybe they figure the customer base is there.

Saturday, September 24, 2022

Family Weekend

 SIUC Family Weekend takes place this weekend so expect to see above normal traffic around town today.

You can also tour the Public Safety (Police) Center. and take a tour of solar sites around the city, then the Football game at 2 p.m. and the Off the Rails concert at 7 p.m.

Thursday, September 22, 2022


 Slabz is the only retail shop still open in the Univeristy Plaza strip. If whomever is working on it can get the indoor skate park opened across the street in what was the Crossfit Gym, both businesses would benefit. Not sure how it would affect the rest of downtown as we would likely see a lot more skateboarders on the sidewalks in the area.

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

Return to Carbondale

Had a customer in the store yesterday that had moved out of Carbondale a few weeks ago to Houston Texas. Said he found he did not like Houston and was moving back to Carbondale. Not that he works remotely and has a pretty well paying job so could work pretty much anywhere with a good internet connection and he chose to return to Carbondale and is looking for a place to rent long term. Anecdotal I know but the traffic is not all one way out.

Sunday, September 18, 2022

Bed Bath and Beyond

 Yet another nail in the coffin of Univeristy Mall, Bed Bath and Beyond has announced it will close its Carbondale location. Much like SIUC spinning the 1.4% decline as several different forms of positive, I imaging the mall management will present this as yet another opportunity to get a new tenant into that location. Given the amount of growth and number of buildings it is knocking down around Memorial Hospital, I would imaging SI Healthcare will rent the space out soon.

Wednesday, September 14, 2022


 I see the shuttered Denny's on the West side of town is being razed, leaving quite an empty area as the car wash that stood next to it got pulled down several months ago.  Hope that something goes in there within the next six months as we are seeing noticable hollowing out of the west end of Carbondale. Those two spots and the old McDonald's location in front of West Towne Plaza have all come down over the last couple of years, likely because the property owner felt the chance of selling the building was small and pulling it down meant less money spent on upkeep. 

Tuesday, September 13, 2022

El Greco

 Sorry if I got your hopes up but I do not think the late lamented but unprofitable El Greco will be re-opening. However, there is a large sign in the window reading "coming soon". Maybe a smoke shop similar to the late, not open long enough to be lamented Blue Gorilla which operated for a month or too in the same location in the Fall of 2020.

Sunday, September 11, 2022

City Council Meeting

 The City council meets this Tuesday. A couple of interesting items on the agenda

Buffalo Wild Wings applying for an on-premises secondary business license.  Maybe opening a ghost kitchen?

Ordinance approving a vacant building registry. Would be interesting to know just how many buildings are vacant in Carbondale. for example, I had no idea that the apartment on West Monroe has been vacant for awhile before it burnt

Saturday, September 10, 2022

Plaza Tire

 Plaza Tire has moved out of its long time location near the intersection of Main and Wall into the old Pier 1 location on Giant City Road.

Wednesday, September 7, 2022

SIUC Enrollment

 Been listening to the Chancellor put multiple spins on fall enrollment at SIUC:  largest Freshman class in 6 years, freshman class size increased for the third consecutive year, increase of 2.5% new students from the region, etc. Still, when you look at overall numbers, enrollment is down 1.4%, in a year when Uof I Champaign enrolled record numbers. It is not that students do not want to go to college, it just appears they do not want go to college at SIUC.

Throwing money at the athletic program won't do it. I have taught at SEMO for twenty years. Every year for 20 years I have asked students why they chose to come there. Responses are always the same with these the top three:  1. cost 2. location 3. programs. The only ones who have ever said they came because of the athletic program were those attending on an athletic scholarship.

Monday, September 5, 2022



The downtown mural project has quietly started. This mural going up on the side of SI Pawn at the intersection of Walnut and University. Not one of the propsed murals for this spot though. 

Sunday, September 4, 2022

Concert Canceled

 Last night's Off the Rails concert was cancelled due to the possibiltiy of rain. It sprinked off and on most of the evening but no outright rain.

From the ads I saw on Facebook, it appears that the City and Carbondale Main Street are partnering with IllinoisSouth, rather than Carbondale Tourism, to promote the event. 

Saturday, September 3, 2022

Piles Fork Path

The city wants imput on a proposed reconstruction of the Piles Fork Green Way path. Currently the path runs from East Grand to East Walnut. The proposed plan would widen it to 10 feet, resurface it and extend the eastern terminal to join with the Crab Orchard Greenway. Some much needed signage would be installed as well. The path running from the Town Square to SIUC's campus was finished years ago and still has no signs installed.

Friday, September 2, 2022

Apartment Fire

 Appears both the apartment building and the house next to it on West Monroe were empty so no injuries from the fire. Of course, the question then becomes, if no one lived in the apartments, what caused the fire? I imagine the police and fire departments are still investigating to see if there was criminal activity .