by TaLeiza Calloway
St. Joseph resident Ellie Studer stood by a tree in the rain and watched as the building that once housed the Central Minnesota Credit Union and a few other local businesses came down June 13.
“I wish I could just get one brick,” Studer said.
Studer is a member of the St. Joseph Historical Society. She said it was hard to see the building torn down.
The building was built in November 1904, and served as the home to the First State Bank of St. Joseph. In 1917, the bank moved to Minnesota Street but made its way back to College Avenue in 1980, according to the history book, “St. Joseph: Preserving Heritage.”
The building was home to more than a bank. It’s been through a number of transitions that included a funeral home, feed mill and a VFW. St. Joseph resident Marlin Eich said it is not everyday you have a building that has been so many different things torn down. Eich is president of the St. Joseph Historical Society. He and Studer took photos during the demolition.
The St. Joseph City Council voted in April to demolish the building at 35 College Ave. N. as part of a planned expansion of city offices. Honer Excavating Inc. of St. Joseph completed the demolition work.
The city bought the building at 35 College Ave. N in November. While the minimum auction price was $130,000, the city purchased the property for $110,000, plus miscellaneous fees.
While plans for expanded city offices are still taking shape, one part of the project includes the creation of a community center. The city is working with the architectural firm Hagemeister Mack of St. Cloud on the project.
City council members unanimously voted June 7 to authorize staff to request proposals for construction management services to assist with the project.