Historic sites

Two Chicago Landmarks Make 2022 List of Illinois' Most Endangered Historic Places

Provided by Landmarks Illinois

A 19th century residence, a beachfront park, a lodge, a courthouse and a pair of commercial buildings make up this year's list of the most endangered historic places in Illinois.

The annual list from Landmarks Illinois, is made up of nominations from "preservationists, community leaders and concerned citizens throughout the state," the organization says.

Each year's list is meant to focus on sites threatened by deterioration, lack of maintenance, insufficient funds or inappropriate development, according to Landmark Illinois.

More specifically, this year's list is a "targeted call to action for historic and culturally significant sites that face a serious risk of demolition and/or are suffering significant neglect due to lack of maintenance or insufficient funding for repair," a press release says.

According to the group, these landmarks have historic, cultural and economic value, and "Demolishing or improperly redeveloping them would rob current and future generations of the chance to experience them and learn about their unique stories."

The landmarks in place range from Rockford, to Wilmette, to Joliet to Chicago. Here's what's on this year's list:

Century & Consumers Buildings: 202-220 S. State St., Chicago 

According to Landmarks Illinois, the two early 20th-century commercial buildings sit within the National Register-listed Loop Retail Historic District and face demolition by the federal government. Previous redevelopment plans were halted due to security concerns by the adjacent federal courts.

Eugene S. Pike House: 1826 W. 91st St., Chicago

The late 19th-century home once used as a "Watchman's Residence" for the Forest Preserve District of Cook County sits at the southern edge of the Dan Ryan Woods and is part of the National Register-listed Ridge Historic District, Landmark Illinois says.

The house is vacant, deteriorating and needs an outside user and investor.

Will County Courthouse: 100 W. Jefferson St., Joliet

According to Landmarks Illinois, the courthouse was built in 1969 and designed by Otto Stark of C.F. Murphy Associates in partnership with Krugel, Healy & Moore Architects.

The organization says the Brutalist building is at risk of demolition due to Will County's current lack of interest to explore reuse opportunities for the architecturally significant but vacant structure.

Elks Lodge No. 64: 210 W. Jefferson Rd., Rockford

The former community meeting space was built in 1912. According to Landmarks Illinois, the architecturally significant but long-vacant structure faces demolition by neglect. The building requires emergency repairs as well as a rehabilitation and reuse plan.

Gillson Park: Lake Ave and Michigan Ave., Wilmette

The 60-acre, Prairie-style public park sitting along Lake Michigan is an open space used and beloved by locals.

However, according to Landmarks Illinois, the Wilmette Park District is considering changes to the 107-year-old park that would alter its passive design and remove greenery to add more roads and parking.

Previous years' list includes St. Mary’s School in Galena, Klas Restaurant in Cicero, Hill Motor Sales Building in Oak Park and various Green Book sites across the state.

According to a press release, once a property is included on the Most Endangered List, Landmarks Illinois remains committed to its preservation efforts.

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