Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Old Petro Stop Station On West Broadway Likely To Be Demolished Today....

Photos and blog post by John Hoff

A backhoe is in position near the old Petro Stop gas station on West Broadway, and a bulldozer has cleared a great deal of snow in obvious preparation for dump trucks to haul away rubble. It doesn't look like the little gas station with wooden shingles, still advertising gas for a buck, will last the day...

Johnny Northside blog visited the location today to photograph the structure for posterity.

Here you go, posterity.

Is that the face of Che Guavera peeking around the corner? Similar artwork exists on the wall near Pair Of Dice pizza.
The little structure is dwarfed by a backhoe, and it's not even THAT large a backhoe. This won't take long.
Many of the lights on the shelter overhanging where the pumps USED to be feature the remains of bird nests.
Layers of posters have accumulated on the boards covering the spaces where windows presumably used to be.
The newest poster advertises this year's Shrine Circus. A condemnation order--which can be found all over North Minneapolis--may be faded, but still has power. Does that "illegal to remove" thing still apply when you remove THE WHOLE BUILDING?
The address of the Petro Stop is 2601 West Broadway. The building bears no address except for its condemnation order.
Here's the little counter where customers used to pass their money. Look, there's a James Bond poster for "Die Another Day" with a gun pointing at the counter! I wonder how many times somebody pointed an actual or pretend gun at the clerk behind this counter?
This lighting fixture reminds me of a plant pod dropping seeds.

Behold the future. Many of us remain cynical about whether Gateway lofts won't turn into crappy housing for problem people. We are watching.


Anonymous said...

vs. the ALREADY crappy housing that currently holds the problem people? I'd rather see something new and nice up than a rotting gas station. Do you ever report a story without being negitive?

Johnny Northside said...

Oh, I'm quite e xcited to see something new there, but multi-unit housing? I'm sure all the current "crappy" stuff was "new and nice" at one time.

For the record: the gas station made it through the day and, as I type these words at 1:34 a.m., it seems likely TODAY will be the day it goes down.

I should have realized it would go down like the James Bond title that made its way into the blog post: Die Another Day.

Anonymous said...

Can I use my Section 8 voucher at the new housing?

MikeT said...

How should we spin plopping a concentration of poor people in an already depressed neighborhood in a positive way? "New and nice" is not a good reason to build something. Especially when it will undoubtedly lower the surrounding property values.

I'm sorry, but even George Bush was a cute baby, and look how he turned out.

Anonymous said...

Yup, it will be nice to have something new on that corner but leaving the ruins of that "Gas Station" in place for 6 years after they purchased the property does not send a good message about community sensitivity.

Purchasing the property for $419,000 and investing another $1.6 million (of mostly community funds) for 13 "affordable" units makes me wonder if these guys are in their own little world of nonprofit monopoly rather than contributing to the communities best interests.

I certainly hope that they have the finances in place to do timely maintenance on the structure rather than waiting in line for a public handout.

Nip Licker said...

Yes yes yes it's all George Bush's fault.

Johnny Northside said...

The gas station stands as of tonight, but they took down a rather large tree.

Johnny Northside! said...

And it's still a situation of "die another day" though a small forest of trees has been cut down and sawed into sections like you'd see at a lumber mill.

Michael Ballard said...

Thanks for that indepth reporting.

Anonymous said...

It took six years to work out all the politics to build the site. The people who made this happen is doing it for the greater good to help people live in a nice place with affordable rents, it is sad to read all the negitive comments on here, does anyone understand that change doesn't happen all at once and at least someone is out there trying to help the greater good of society. To the person who made the comment on December 16th I am not sure where you got your facts from. This property is designed to help the working class people, not to make a profit. There will be 46 units in all and only 4 of those units will be set at a market rate rent. I suggest that you look up the funders of this property and read what they do to help communites before you comment.