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City to take over fire cleanup of annex left undone by Oaklawn Inn's owner

DANVILLE — The city plans to step in and clean up the Oaklawn Inn Annex fire site and seek a portion of the property owner's insurance money to cover the cost.


City declares Oaklawn Inn unhabitable, forces residents out

DANVILLE — Nathaniel Gentry thought he would be spending his Fourth of July holiday grilling with friends. Instead, the 58-year-old veteran is searching for a place to live.


Danville shuts down Oaklawn Inn for code violations

DANVILLE — Danville city officials shut down the Oaklawn Inn on East Main Street today, deeming it uninhabitable due to various code  violations including no working fire alarm system, according to Mayor Scott Eisenhauer.

All guests of the hotel’s main facility at 1824 E. Main St. must be out by noon Wednesday, according to Eisenhauer.


New hotel to be built in north Champaign

CHAMPAIGN — An Iowa-based hotel company plans to open a 112-room Residence Inn by Marriott in Champaign next year.

Ravi Patel, vice president of Hawkeye Hotels, said he hopes the four-story hotel at the northwest corner of Marketview Drive and Moreland Boulevard will open about May 1, 2013.


Is it time to wipe slate clean in Bristol Place?

City officials fear best way to clean up neighborhood is to level it — and at least some of the residents agree

CHAMPAIGN — Two months ago, a FedEx carrier tried to deliver a package to a white, two-story home with a good view of the Canadian National railroad tracks and an Ameren Illinois substation. No one was home.


Home sales strengthen in much of area

Champaign County home sales enjoyed another strong month in May, with the number of sales surging 26 percent from the previous May.

Figures from the Champaign County Association of Realtors indicate 260 home sales closed in May, up from 206 a year earlier.

The value of those sales was $40.9 million, up from $30.6 million a year ago — an increase of 34 percent.


Navy veteran chosen for Habitat home

DANVILLE — For Sean Shields, a simple household chore such as washing dishes is anything but simple.

That's because the Danville man, who was injured in a motorcycle accident, must do that and other tasks from a wheelchair in a non-handicap-accessible house.


High-end home sales rebound in April

CHAMPAIGN — A rebound in high-end home sales helped propel April home sales in Champaign County — and prospects look good for a strong May.

April sales were up 19 percent from a year ago in terms of the number of homes sold. They were up 38 percent in terms of sales volume in dollars.


Results of survey of attendees at Scharlau seminar

CHAMPAIGN — Attendees of Busey Bank Vice Chairman Ed Scharlau's economic seminar appear optimistic about the economy this year.

In a survey taken at Tuesday morning's seminar, the collective opinion of attendees was that:

— The Dow Jones Industrial Average will be 13,076 at year's end, up from 12,217 at the end of 2011.


Scharlau sees 'slightly better' economy

CHAMPAIGN — Payrolls of major employers are rebounding. Retail sales are growing. The local housing market is stabilizing. And farmers are anticipating another year of strong commodity prices.

Those factors, plus anecdotal evidence, make Busey Bank Vice Chairman Ed Scharlau think the local economy is getting stronger.