Council, residents get close-up look at state of former liquor store building

TRACY CITY COUNCIL MEMBER SETH SCHMIDT (left) and resident Shirley Anderson look over the basement of the old liquor store during a tour of the building Saturday. Photo / Per Peterson

By Per Peterson

Three years ago, the City of Tracy’s four-person liquor store committee led an open meeting to determine the future of Tracy’s Municipal Liquor Store. On Saturday, a group of about 15 Tracy residents, including a number of council members, toured the building that is now home only to remnants of the store and, ironically, equipment that was once used in the Multi-Purpose Center.

Meandering around all that equipment inside the dimly-lit structure, the group of tourists scanned the inside of the building, literally from top to bottom, the latest in a long list of steps to determine what to do about a new community/senior center after the MPC was sold by the City to make way for a downtown restaurant.

“My thought is, throwing good money after bad isn’t very logical in the long run,” said Ken Witt, one of the main spokespeople for the senior community and member of a new fundraising committee that also currently includes Ken Giles, Don Gregoire and Becky Averill. “The assessed valuation after the project would be completed would be significantly less than if it were a new building.”

Saturday’s tour was an official meeting. After Tracy Mayor Pam Cooreman called the meeting to order, attendees scattered about the building — some going to the old bar area, others to the basement, where there was some light, compared to the main floor that was lit up by only natural light.

Council member Ron Koopman said he has real concerns about the walls of the building, but said he can’t make a final determination until he gets some idea of what it would cost to remodel the building.

“If the west wall looks like this, the east wall … if you stop and think about it, it’s the same building,” Koopman said. “I guess I’m for putting up a new (building). (The west) side’s gotta all come out, and if the east side’s gotta come out, then the envelope (of the building) is gone.”

See this week’s Headlight Herald for more on this article.