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Burned-out Restaurant is a Hazard

The Brickhouse Restaurant in Bushnell burned down in March of 2011.

Nothing has been done to the Main Street site since the fire. Debris remains in the alley behind it.

Mayor Steve Russell says the building is an eyesore and a safety hazard.

He says, “A lot of people say, 'You know, how much longer do we have to look at this mess? Can't we get it cleaned up? And, of course, if we condemn the property and the city goes in and does it it's going to cost several thousands of dollars.”

The city would like to avoid that expenditure. Russell says the city has contacted lawyers for the owners of the building  about tearing it down. Elias and Ghada Samaan live out of town. He says their attorneys have not responded to the city's request.

Until they do, the city might be forced to push the debris from the alley back into what is left of the building. The city is also considering draping the building in the interim.

The owners of the restaurant, Rick and Allison Roberts, have been charged with aggravated arson.