Old Garcia's, White Horse Inn making room for apartments
CHAMPAIGN — A five-story, 52-unit apartment building is expected to replace the old White Horse Inn and Garcia's Pizza-in-a-Pan buildings on Green Street in Campustown.
Demolition began this week on the former White Horse Inn at 112 E. Green St., C, and workers say they also expect to demolish the old Garcia's building just to the west at 108 E. Green St., C.
No demolition permit was on file for the Garcia's building Wednesday, but Larry Happ, Champaign's building-safety supervisor, said a footings-and-foundation permit has been issued for the new building to be built on both sites.
The new development will change the face of Campustown along that part of Green Street and obliterate hangouts held dear in the memories of University of Illinois alumni.
The White Horse Inn, a cozy pub featuring burgers and more, was at that site from 1973 until July. A new version of the pub opened in August at 510 E. John St., C — this time with a menu featuring sausage.
The glass-paneled Garcia's building was constructed in 1976 and remodeled in 1983. The "Flying Tomato Brothers" operated that store, known for pizzas by the slice, until 2008. Today, Garcia's is located in west Champaign at 313 N. Mattis Ave.
Soon, the two sites on Green Street will be living quarters for students who want a deluxe apartment in the sky — alongside the eight-story Park Place apartment building just across Second Street.
The footings-and-foundation permit, approved this week, was issued to Broeren Russo Construction. Larson Real Estate LLC was listed as the property owner and KAP Architecture as the architect.
An estimated cost for the project won't be available until the building-permit application comes in.
This January is expected to be a much bigger month for building permits than most Januaries, Happ said.
The month's permits are expected to include one for the new Hyatt Place Hotel in downtown Champaign and one each for the new Ford City Ford-Lincoln and Illini Nissan auto dealerships on West Marketview Drive.
Altogether, there could be permits for an estimated $35 million worth of work, compared with $5 million for a typical January.