Former London Pub building empty again; violations cited

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Marcia Nelesen
Wednesday, May 28, 2014

JANESVILLE--A prominent downtown building is empty again after the tenant closed her business because of continuing code violations.

“The tenant chose to close the facility, citing a disagreement with the owner about who was responsible for fixing code issues in the building,” said Gale Price, Janesville's manager of building and development services.

“It is their belief or understanding that it should be Fred's responsibility, and apparently Fred is refusing to make the corrections,” Price said, referring to owner Fred Shahlapour. “So they have on their own accord chose to close the facility.”

Someplace Else Pub & Grub opened last year at 121 E. Milwaukee Street after Lava Lounge closed.

Shahlapour said he would fix the issues before a new tenant moved in.

Numerous businesses have operated out of the building in recent years, including Karmas,  McstAggers and Corvina's. Longtime Janesville residents likely remember the building when it housed the London Pub.

Price said the city had recorded a number of minor code issues before Someplace Else opened, “things we didn't think would be reasonable to keep them closed.”

The city gave the owner and the leasee, Cindy Pelton, a deadline to correct them, he said.

Some issues arose from changes made by previous owners. They included a non-compliant bathroom seat and a landing at the front door that had been removed.

“We repeatedly indicated to Fred he needs to fix that,” Price said.

The fire department also found a “host” of electrical issues, Price said. For example, extension cords were being used instead of permanent wiring, flexible conduits were not installed properly, and junction boxes were open.

Shahlapour said he has removed the extension cords.

The business also was forced to close several days last winter when the water froze.

“He's not going to be able to rent or reopen until he fixes this stuff,” Price said of Shahlapour.

Shalapour said Tuesday the building is for rent, and he said the issues would be addressed before anyone else moves in.

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