Chester St. Building collapse; what it means for surrounding buildings and the community


CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) – It’s just a pile of bricks, but to some people, the collapsed building once brought a sense of community.

The old C-street Bar came down on Saturday in Champaign and many people are wondering how it happened and what comes next.

We learned the area where the building sits is going to stay how it is until some questions get answered.

Randy Smith is the Champaign Building Safety Supervisor. He said right now, they’re just waiting.

He said they’re in talks with the owners of not just the C-street building, but the ones surrounding it.

Those owners are all waiting to hear back from structural engineers. The engineers are going to inspect all of the buildings. The most important thing they’re going to look at is if the buildings surrounding the old bar are safe.

Meanwhile, people who worked at or visited the bar in its prime are still dealing with the emotions of seeing it collapsed.

C.J. Brown said she wanted to be able to commemorate the bar and all it brought her.

“It was really shocking at first, but then I was there with my drag mom, Ceduxion, and some other really close friends, and we started taking pictures and dancing. I was having a lot of fun and I was like this is what it’s supposed to be about,” she said.

Right now, there is no timeline of when things will get cleaned up or when roads will open. Smith said everything is for safety purposes.

The building that sits right next to the old C-street bar has a sign posted that said, “Condemned. Not approved for occupancy.” It’s dated June 26th, the same day the building collapsed.

WCIA 3 did reach out to the owner of that building. She said they were still in the early fact-finding stages and had no comment.

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