Astoria Building Demolition Begins In Downtown Duluth

DULUTH, Minn. — Demolition is underway on the historic Hotel Astoria building in the heart of Downtown Duluth.

The front of the building looks like it always has on the corner of East Superior Street and 1st Avenue.  The back side is no more. Crews are expected to level the structure before the end of the year.

ZMC Hotels bought the property and lower parking lot next door about 5 years ago. The Heritage Commission tried to stop demolition, but the City Council signed off on it in September.

ZMC says the structure is badly deteriorating and the cost to rehab the building would have been at least $11.5 million.

“So as much as, you know we know this building had some historic significance to some people in the area. We just don’t think it was a very good showing of contribution to history in Downtown Duluth. There are much better buildings, and its safety concerns just became insurmountable. So, it needed to come down before somebody got hurt,” said Anne Stratioti, Operations Administrator with ZMC Hotels.

The future of the prime downtown real-estate is unknown at this time with labor, economic, and marketing conditions making it difficult to form a plan right now.

ZMC officials tell Fox 21 they’re considering a hotel with retail space, or market-rate housing.

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