Ishpeming J.C. Penney Building Coming Down

A block of Main Street in downtown Ishpeming will look very different in a couple of days after one of the buildings on it is knocked down.

The former J.C. Penney building at Main Street and Cleveland Avenue has been empty for years.

The neighboring section of Cleveland Avenue is blocked off to allow for debris to crash to the sidewalk.

Because of the demolition, at least one neighboring business looks a bit different as well.

Congress Pizza shares a wall with the Penney’s building.

But Congress is still open in spite of the work next door.

Owner Paul Bonetti says when the demolition caved in the roof of the Penney’s building, it shook the wall that the restaurant shares with that property.

So he took the old photographs and other local memorabilia off of that wall to protect those items.

The Ishpeming Downtown Development Authority bought the Penney’s building last fall.

It’s about 60 years old and had become an eyesore and a health hazard because of mold, water damage and asbestos.

The demolition is part of more than $2.2 million of improvements the DDA is making through a bond it obtained.

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