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Bloomington To Consider West Side Beer Garden, $2.5M In Sewer Repairs

Eric's Too Restaurant
Eric Stock
Eric's Too Restaurant wants to be allowed to sell alcohol on an outdoor patio.

A west Bloomington restaurant is getting pushback over plans to add a beer garden.
Eric's Too Restaurant, 921 Maple Hill Rd., wants to expand his liquor license to sell alcohol on an outdoor patio.

Owner Eric Trujillo, who also owns Eric’s Restaurant at 903 W. Wood St., opened his second eatery at the former Cousins Restaurant location.

Managers of two nearby hotels, the Ramada and Country Inn and Suites, recently complained to the city's liquor commission about what they say has been a litany of problems there; loud music, fights, trash and concerns for their guests’ safety.

The commission recommended limiting beer garden hours to until 10 p.m. on weeknights and 11 p.m. on weekends.

Liquor commissioners told Trujillo he could seek to have that condition lifted in the spring.

Deputy City Manager Billy Tyus said the city considers that a reasonable compromise.

“We know there have been questions, but the liquor commission felt that the compromise of limiting operating hours was one that would help address those concerns,” Tyus said.

The commission isn't recommending any restrictions on amplified music outside, but Tyus noted the city could enforce noise ordinance guidelines if that become a problem.

Sewer Repairs

The city council on Monday will also consider close to $2.5 million in sewer repairs in more than two dozen locations throughout the city.

Bloomington sewer map
Credit City of Bloomington
The city of Bloomington plans sewer rehab work at more than two dozen locations, based on a proposal the city council will consider on Monday.

“We’ve been around a long time and our infrastructure is aging,” Tyus said. “One of the things we are charged with is really funding methods like this to cost-effectively to make some of these critical repairs.

“Sewer mains, they’re not sexy of exciting to folks, but the problem comes when they break.”

The city plans to install an inflated lining in those trouble spots. Engineers said the repairs are more cost-effective than replacing the sewer lines.

The city said it will prioritize projects based on previous emergency repairs, work orders and problems that sewer cameras have revealed.

Hoerr Construction of Normal submitted the lowest of three bids at $2.492,000.

The price tag is about $500,000 than the city projected. It also includes repairing about 1,100 feet of sewer rehabilitation for Bloomington-Normal Water Reclamation District lines near East Hamilton Road at a cost of $379,000.

Tyus said the city will have to delay several other sewer projects to recoup that money.

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Eric Stock is the News Director at WGLT. You can contact Eric at ejstoc1@ilstu.edu.