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|Abingdon In Line for Grant Funding for Downtown Building Demolition
|The city of Abingdon is a step closer to having money in hand to pay for the demolition of several buildings in the city's downtown that have been deemed dangerous and recommended for the wrecking ball.
The Western Illinois Regional Council, an economic development organization Abingdon belongs to, has worked to help the city get in line for up to $200,000 in Community Development Assistance Program - or CDAP - funding. The state money, if approved, would be used to tear down buildings on the west side of the 100 block of South Main Street.
Shannon Duncan, a planning coordinator for WIRC, told the aldermen and around two-dozen visitors at a public hearing prior to Monday night's council meeting that Abingdon has a good chance to receive the funding. Duncan says this process is a little different than others.
"In this instance the city was contacted first, (WIRC) said we want to provide you with money for this project, and now we're submitting the application. So, not to confuse anyone, but it is really a different animal this time around."
Duncan says the application will be submitted this week and the turnaround is "pretty fast." She says the project also has the approval of the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency.
The city council decided in 2007 to move ahead with tearing down the buildings after an inspection revealed they were unsafe and it wasn't cost-effective to rehabilitate them. The only question during the public hearing was raised by Mayor-elect Roger Stegall, who asked Duncan if the money was to be used for demolition only or if it could go toward rehabilitation. Duncan responded by saying the grant was for demolition.
Stegall spoke out against demolishing the buildings while he was campaigning for mayor. It's not clear whether he'll try to reverse course after he's sworn into office next month. The six aldermen in attendance unanimously approved a resolution in support of the CDAP grant during the regular city council meeting.
Shannon Duncan of WIRC discusses the possibility of Abingdon receiving Community Development Grant Funding to cover the cost of tearing down several buildings in the 100 block of South Main Street. A public hearing on the matter was held prior to the regular Abingdon City Council meeting Monday night at Abingdon City Hall.
(story and photo by WGIL's Mike Perry)
|04 21 09 by Newsroom
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