Our first look at the lease from new owner of Country Fair Apartments made it clear that they would ruin the place—a place we’d lived happily for 20 years—so we moved out. Even so, I’m a little surprised to see this just 8 years later:

Because the heat is not working, 9 out of 42 buildings are considered unlivable…. If the property owners don’t fix the issues in a timely manner, tearing down the buildings may be the next step.


In happier times.

Breaking news in the latest issue of the real estate trade journal Duh! “Apartment landlords call for lower tax assessments!”

I found this whole article especially hilarious because Jackie and I lived very happily in Country Fair Apartments for more than 20 years before these clowns bought it, renamed it Grammercy, and managed to ruin it in less than a year:

Grammercy said its annual net operating income has dropped from more than $1 million in 2014 to a loss of more than $300,00 in 2018. It said its vacancy rate was 41 percent in 2018.

Source: Apartment landlords call for lower tax assessments amid higher vacancy rates

In what is not at all a coincidence, 2014 is the year we moved out—the last year that the old leases were in effect. I wrote a whole post about the preposterous non-lease that they wanted us to sign: Why we moved.

For those incompetents to be losing hundreds of thousands of dollars a year is richly deserved, although I am sorry if it ends up hitting Champaign and Urbana’s tax base.

At Country Fair, we had route for a walk around the apartment complex that we could do almost entirely on sidewalks that we called “walking around the block.” It took 7 minutes, so I figured it was about a third of a mile. Most nice evenings we’d go do that walk, often going two or three times around.

One of the first things I wanted to do at Winfield Village was find a similar walk, and the situation is actually a bit better here: At Country Fair the old part of the complex had its various sidewalks connected so that you could walk in a big circle. The newer part of the complex wasn’t like that: It had sidewalks from each building to the closest parking lot, but they’d not been connected to one another, so there was no good way to go for a walk—you constantly had to either cut through the grass, or else walk through the parking lots. Here the whole complex is well-connected with sidewalks.

The most obvious way around is a bit over half a mile, but has the disadvantage of taking us out along Curtis Road, which doesn’t make for an especially pleasant walk.

It’s easy to skip that leg, staying inside the complex, but that shortens the walk, making it a bit less than half a mile.

Happily, there are some additional segments of sidewalks, connecting the sidewalks that run to the backs of the parking lots to one another (exactly what was missing at Country Fair), meaning that it’s pretty easy to put together a connected walk around the perimeter of the complex.

We went out for just that walk today, and I tracked it on Endomondo to see the length, and was pleased to find that the most obvious way to walk around the perimeter of the complex, starting and ending at our townhouse, is exactly one mile.

Here’s the map:

It’s not crucial to have a defined walk to call a “walk around the block.” It would be just as good to just go wander around, turning whichever way we feel like on any particular day, putting together different segments in a different order each day. But I like having a particular walk that we call a “walk around the block.” It’s comfortably predictable.

I expect we’ll take that walk pretty often.