CCC votes for masonry rehabilitation for City Building

By Eric Heisig

The Champaign City Council unanimously voted to rehabilitate the masonry of the City Building, located at 102 N. Neil Street, home to city offices and City Hall.

For the remainder of 2008, the City of Champaign will continue to review remaining capital projects to fund the masonry project. Renovations are scheduled to be completed in Nov. 2009, costing the City of Champaign over $1.7 million. In the next two years, the city will develop a long-term maintenance plan.

“This building has high visibility in the community,” said City Manager Steven Carter. “We love the building and don’t want to lose it.”

A presentation given during the meeting by John Frauenhoffer, Frauenhoffer and Associates, explained the problems the masonry has had in the past and remedies for those problems.

Frauenhoffer said one of the major problems he found was in the metal support beams which frame the building.

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The beams are rusting and warping to the point where they have shifted some of the bricks, he said. Most of the damage can be attributed to weather and the amount of rain and ice every year.

Tom Bruno, council member at-large, said he hopes the project can be completed in one building season, so as to not cause any inconveniences for citizens and workers who utilize the building, but parts of surrounding streets will be closed off.

“It is worth it just to crank this out and get it done quickly,” Bruno said.

Champaign City Council holds its meetings on Tuesday nights at 7 p.m.