Vernon Brothers/2 S. Barstow project not going to happen

Mike Paulus

Well, it looks like the all-ages venue/cultural center/non-profit organization proposed by Nate and Justin Vernon for the seemingly cursed 2 S. Barstow building is a no-go. From the Brothers Vernon:

  • We have met with countless wonderful and talented people who have helped us put together building plans, all whom put their hearts into this idea with us. We have spent a lot of our own money on researching and assessing the property.  And through this research and assessing, we have unfortunately found that the cost of renovating the building, and the circumstances surrounding it, make it nearly impossible for a non-profit cultural center to survive, let alone thrive.
  • We've looked at this from many angles – even to the extent of leaving the plans for the 2nd and 3rd floor development off to meet our budgets. We've also done our best to accurately forecast whether or not the building could operate as a bar/venue, opposed to a cultural center/venue. However, after much deliberation, we have decided that the challenges of the South Barstow building would be overshadowing our original goal and intent, and that our vision must stay intact. So, it is with great regret that we have decided to discontinue our plans as submitted to the City of Eau Claire for the development of Union College.

We know they did try pretty hard to find a good plan. They say they’re “pausing their vision for a venue in Eau Claire.” Sounds like they’re keeping the door open for something in the future, but 2. South Barstow (Union College in there eyes) won’t ever be the place. They add, “It seems wrong that there is so much talent and great art here with such a small platform to illuminate it.”

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