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Uptown Normal commission to consider Maggie Miley expansion

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NORMAL — A new building may join the uptown Normal lineup, expanding Maggie Miley’s Irish Pub and creating additional event space.

The Uptown Normal Review Commission will consider next week a $950,000 expansion that would fill the vacant lot at 128 E. Beaufort St. between Maggie Miley’s and First Site Apartments.

The expansion would connect to Maggie Miley’s and include two floors. The front half of the first floor would allow for additional 1,100-square-foot dining space for Maggie Miley’s, and the back half would hold garage space and an elevator, according to documents prepared by Normal town staff for the commission.

Maggie Miley's 3

Maggie Miley's Irish Pub displays its name from its building at 126 E. Beaufort St. in Normal to the lot that neighbors it.

The second floor would have an open-air terrace and outdoor bar at the front with interior space in the back for restrooms and other facility uses.

“Akin to Medici, the building is designed to appear as a full two-story building from the street – the second-story facade includes significant openings from the terrace to a balcony over the sidewalk. Wood doors would serve as shutters for times in which privacy is desired,” according to the commission documents.

The second floor would also connect to the existing space on Maggie Miley’s second floor, which includes an apartment and ballroom.

Building owner, Barbara Fuller, has indicated she intends to rent out the non-residential second-floor spaces for events, as she owns both the lot and the building that houses Maggie Miley’s.

The open lot has been used for private parking and as outdoor dining space for Maggie Miley’s during the pandemic.

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A large tent outside Maggie Miley's, 126 E. Beaufort St. in Uptown Normal, had few customers looking to be served Monday, Aug. 31, 2020. New serving rules designed to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 are likely to make a trip to local bar and grills a reminder that Central Illinois is not out of the woods with virus infections.

Town staff is “very supportive” of the project, which they believe will be a “very attractive addition to the uptown streetscape” and increase the town’s outdoor event space, according to commission documents.

The review commission will consider the approval of the design at its Jan. 11 meeting and determine if variances to building code will be required for an entrance and the second-floor windows in the proposal.

If variances are required, the commission will send their recommendations to the Normal Town Council for final approval.

Council also would have to approve a license permitting the balcony to extend over the sidewalk.

A survey found that Gen Z and millennial Americans are spending more money now than they did before the pandemic. Nearly 70% of respondents are now spending money on things they missed because of the pandemic. Over half of the people surveyed have splurged on a trip away. 49% are spending money on fancy food and drinks at restaurants and bars. It was also found that six in ten respondents are more financially confident now than before the pandemic. This is due to their desire to be more financially responsible. 61% of people managed to save at least $1,000 since the pandemic started in 2020


Contact Kelsey Watznauer at (309) 820-3254. Follow her on Twitter: @kwatznauer.

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