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The former Hotel Astoria in Duluth's historic downtown will be demolished following a vote by city officials on Monday to overrule the Heritage Preservation Commission's wishes to keep the 117-year-old building standing. 

The Duluth City Council voted 5-3 to authorize the demolition permit for the decaying structure at 102-108 E. Superior St.

ZMC Hotels, owners of the vacant building, argue the building is a "dilapidated eyesore" and a hazard to the community. 

The north exterior wall of the former Astoria Hotel building in downtown Duluth. Courtesy of Northland Consulting Engineers, L.L.P / City of Duluth. 

The north exterior wall of the former Astoria Hotel building in downtown Duluth. Courtesy of Northland Consulting Engineers, L.L.P / City of Duluth. 

"While this building may have some small details that represent the overall architecture of the city, it has been altered and deterred to a point where it is no longer recognizable as a good representation of the city's architecture," the owners wrote in a May letter to the city's Heritage Preservation Commission. 

According to city officials, there are around 35 historic landmarks in Duluth and two historic districts. 

The building now marked for demolition is not a landmark itself, but it's within one of the city's two historic districts where all the buildings together are thought to showcase a value and character worthy of preservation. 

Over the years, the structure has housed the Chinese Dragon Restaurant, Old Towne Antiques and other local businesses. It was originally build in 1906 as Hotel Astoria. 

But, Anne Stratioti, the operations administrator with ZMC Hotels, said getting the building back in working order is not financially feasible. The third floor, for example, remains charred from a fire that happened 93 years ago. 

There's currently no proposals to redevelop the site once the building is torn down. 

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