Bloomington’s plan commission gave the project unanimous approval at its regular Monday meeting.
How soon the construction is finished will depend on the the availability of supplies and materials. The construction start could come this year or might be pushed off until the spring, according to Tim Cover, with Studio 3 Design.
Peoples bought the property for $1.95 million, from Pepsi-cola General Bottlers of Indiana in August of 2021. The bank has set up a drive-thru banking facility on the southeast side of the lot.
Peoples Bank will now undertake the demolition of the Pepsi bottling plant, followed by the construction of a four-story building, totaling about 34,200 square feet, located near the corner of 17th and College on the southeast side of the site. The bank will include a 3-lane drive-thru.
Last Tuesday, after Bloomington’s board of park commissioners meeting, operations director Tim Street told The B Square that a pair of bald eagles live out at Griffy Lake.
There’s a old reporter’s motto: “If your mother says she loves you, check it out.”
So on Saturday, The B Square checked it out.
Street was not kidding.
In the early afternoon, from the north end of the causeway, perched in a tree about 250 yards away, across the water on the south shore of the lake, a bald eagle was barely visible.
It flew off west along the south shore, then circled back, looped around low towards the middle of the lake, snatched a fish out of the water with its talons, and flew back to its perch, where it snacked on the fish.
The set of photos below, all taken on Saturday, is presented in chronological order. It starts with a red-tailed hawk in downtown Bloomington, a great blue heron at Griffy Lake, the bald eagle, a turtle who made friends with a Canada goose, and a great blue heron at Miller-Showers Park.
Over the last week, Miller-Showers Park on the north side of town, wedged between Walnut Street and College Avenue, has continued to see lots of bird activity.
On Sunday, in the skies above the park, a red-winged blackbird was preemptively harassing a red-tailed hawk, to keep the raptor from even landing. That aerial battle is not documented in these sets of photos, which were taken on two different days.
The first set of photos features mainly shots of a red-winged blackbird harassing a great blue heron as it fished the pools. The blackbirds aggressively protect their nests, and will harass human visitors to the park, too.
The second set of photos features a couple of blue heron fishing success stories. The heron is built to fish, and scores frequent catches, which the bird swallows whole.
A posted sign at Miller-Showers states that fishing—along with swimming, diving or skateboarding—is prohibited. The B Square has not documented any sk8er blue herons at the park.
The wildlife at Miller-Showers could get some mechanical visitors sometime in the next few weeks. The ponds are supposed to be dredged sometime in the first half of the year, according to one of the goals set by city of Bloomington utilities (CBU). CBU operates the pools as part of the city’s stormwater management system.
Wildlife drama unfolded Saturday evening at Miller-Showers Park, which is wedged between Walnut Street and College Avenue on Bloomington’s north side.
In the early evening hours, a great blue heron flew in and landed near the east bank of the southernmost stormwater detention pond, towards the spillway to the next lower pond.
From there the bird worked its way along the bank southward, catching and eating at least one pretty big fish, which looked like a largemouth bass.
The great blue endured repeated harassment from a female red-winged blackbird, which would flutter about, at times landing on the bigger bird’s back. The great blue was unperturbed.
Also counted as part of the evening’s wildlife inventory at Miller-Showers Park was a mother mallard, with at least four ducklings in tow. A muskrat carved a V-shape in the water as it swam along the surface from north to south across the pond.
A Sunday afternoon visit to Miller-Showers Park on the north side of Bloomington, wedged between College Avenue and Walnut Street, confirmed that great blue herons are carnivores. Winds were out of the west at 16 mph with a temperature around 67 F degrees.
More photos below. They’re displayed in chronological order. Just after The B Square arrived at Miller-Showers, the heron flew from the southernmost pool down to the lower (northernmost) pool.
Redhead duck at Miller-Showers Park on Jan. 31, 2022.
Image is from April 2020 from the Monroe County online property records system.
The cost of maintaining the lagoon retention walls at Miller-Showers Park will be split between city of Bloomington utilities (CBU) and the city’s parks and recreation department.
The utilities service board (USB) approved its side of the arrangement at its regular meeting on Monday night. The same memorandum of understanding is supposed to be presented to the board of park commissioners at their meeting on Tuesday next week (Feb. 22).
The park is wedged between College Avenue and Walnut Street just south of the SR-46 bypass.
The inventory of wildlife at the park observed by The B Square in the last week at the park includes: mallards; redhead ducks; muskrats; and a possibly a Cooper’s hawk. (The bird has also been identified on social media as a red-tailed hawk.)
The park includes a series of stepped lagoons that are a part of the northside stormwater management infrastructure. Stormwater from more than 170 acres of the city drains into the Miller-Showers facility, and eventually farther downstream.
Around the end of February last year, I was alerted to the presence of redhead ducks at Miller-Showers Park in Bloomington.
Redhead ducks not permanent residents of the park. They were just passing part of the winter there. I had never seen redhead ducks in real life, so I wrote a column about them.
Since then, I have made regular visits to Miller-Showers Park looking for wildlife. And over the last year, I have been rewarded with sightings of a Great Blue Heron and a Mediocre Muskrat. I count this as remarkable for a park that is nestled between two of Bloomington’s heaviest traveled streets: College Avenue and Walnut Street.
I was hoping that the redheads would return this year.