Uptown Normal | WGLT

Uptown Normal

Andrew Huhn presents
Joe Deacon / WGLT

An influx of tax dollars has helped produce a 10% increase in Normal’s year-end general fund balance, according to a mostly positive report presented to the Town Council on Monday.

ribbon-cutting at museum's mall location
Courtesy

Most of the founding team that first brought the Children’s Discovery Museum into existence 25 years ago will be honored at a two-part anniversary celebration this week in Normal.

architects rendering of the Trail East five story building
Town of Normal

Construction is scheduled to begin this fall on the $30 million mixed-use building that will rise on the northeast arc of Uptown circle. It is known as Trail East.

PGAV Planners

An analysis of the tax increment financing (TIF) district in Uptown Normal indicates the effort to spark development in the city center begun in 1999 has been a good value for taxpayers, according to a consultant.

Council members sit at a dais.
Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

The Normal Town Council has approved a development agreement with an Uptown business to create a two-story brewpub and rooftop dining establishment using the old Bill's Key and Lock shop property.

Mary Cullen / WGLT

Updated 4:15 p.m. | Illinois State University is officially a tenant of the planned Trail East Building in Uptown Normal.

Denise LaGrassa at the piano
Mark Gordon

Denise LaGrassa is known best in the Central Illinois area and in Chicago for her jazz-blues sound.

Mural and Beaufort buildings
Ryan Denham / WGLT

The identity of the mystery Uptown Normal mural artist who signed over his rights has been revealed – though the legal fight over the public artwork could soon be rendered moot if the Town of Normal fulfills its promise to safely move it.

Uptown Mural
Staff / WGLT

UPDATED 3:40 p.m. | The Town of Normal says it has obtained a release and waiver from one of the Uptown mural artists—a potentially significant development in the lawsuit over the public artwork.

Emily Hope plays the Make Music Normal Festival tomorrow at 4:15 p.m. in the uptown Normal Roundabout.
Erin Barnard / Sesh Portraiture

Bloomington singer-songwriter Emily Hope is bullish on her sunny outlook and a sense of hope. Matter of fact, the first line in her online bio reads “ … a smiley 23-year-old singer/songwriter, guitarist, and ukulele player.”

Mural and Beaufort buildings
Ryan Denham / WGLT

A federal judge has denied a request for a temporary restraining order to stop demolition at the Trail East site and ordered the mural’s artists and the Town of Normal to return to court for settlement talks.

Janet at the counter
Jeff Smudde / WGLT

Janet Mariani needed a home for her first business—an ice cream shop. She chose Downtown Bloomington.

Mural in Uptown
Ryan Denham / WGLT

A federal judge has given both sides more time to try and resolve the legal dispute over the Uptown Normal mural.

Uptown Mural
Staff / WGLT

A federal judge on Monday said he wants to know more about where the Uptown Normal mural might be moved—and whether it will remain publicly visible—before deciding whether to delay the start of construction at the Trail East site.

Moving the wall mockup
Farnsworth Group

The Town of Normal has pushed back against the 13 artists who’ve sued over the Uptown mural, claiming federal copyright law doesn’t protect them because their artwork can be safely moved.

Uptown Mural
Staff / WGLT

UPDATED 3:40 p.m. | The artists who sued the Town of Normal over their work on the Uptown mural are now asking a judge for a restraining order that would temporarily prevent it from being moved or destroyed.

Uptown Mural
Staff / WGLT

Thirteen of the artists who created the Uptown Normal mural have filed a federal lawsuit to stop the Town of Normal and a developer from demolishing their work.

Family holds photo
Jeff Smudde / WGLT

Army Ranger Sgt. Josh Rodgers of Normal was on his third tour of Afghanistan before he turned 22. He died in a raid of an ISIS headquarters in Afghanistan two years ago this weekend.

Trail East
Farnsworth Group

The developer behind the Trail East project said Monday that Afni, an Illinois State University business incubator, and a mystery “multinational technology company” could be among the tenants in the new Uptown Normal building.

IAS staff in Uptown Normal
Town of Normal

UPDATED 9:40 p.m. | A community arts group at Illinois State University plans to renovate and move in to the unfinished ground floor of the College Avenue parking deck in Uptown Normal.

Vivian Doctora
Darnysha Mitchell / WGLT

Uptown Normal has several places to get a bite to eat. It’s about to get a dozen more.

Farnsworth Group

The Normal Town Council granted developer Bush Construction several variances on preliminary design plans for the Trail East building on Uptown Circle.

The design for the new Trail East building in Uptown Normal
Farnsworth Group

Designs for the Trail East project submitted to the town of Normal are close to what the developer promised earlier, according to town staff.

Beaufort Street buildings
Google Maps

McLean County could soon be getting its fifth craft brewery—and its first in Uptown Normal.

ground floor of the College Avenue parking deck
Jeff Smudde / WGLT

Normal is seeking a developer to lease the unfinished ground floor of the College Avenue parking deck.

Uptown Mural
Staff / WGLT

An attorney who represents 11 artists who created the Uptown Normal mural say federal law requires their permission for it to be demolished—and that compensation may be enough to earn that consent.

architects rendering of the Trail East five story building
Town of Normal

The mayor of Normal said Tuesday that increased town incentives for the Trail East project in Uptown are worth the money.

Architect presents at a meeting
Breanna Grow / WGLT

Officials in Normal defended the Trail East project against public criticism Monday night, with the council unanimously approving two measures to keep the project moving forward.

ImagineAir exhibit
Ryan Denham / WGLT

For the first time in four years, the Children’s Discovery Museum in Uptown Normal is getting ready to cut the ribbon on a new permanent exhibit.

Karyn Smith
Eric Stock / WGLT

A Normal Town Council candidate said she supports the town's economic development efforts but is concerned about the town's recent decision to raze historic buildings in Uptown for the Trail East project.

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