Rockford mayor against diocese plan to demolish iconic buildings

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ROCKFORD (WREX) – A nearly century old Rockford Diocese building is getting torn down over Christmas break.

The former chancery and bishop’s residence is located on North Court Street. It has been vacant since 2009. Former Rockford Mayor Larry Morrissey started a petition to save the building, saying “This stately stone structure is one of our finest examples of historic architecture and represents the cherished craftsmanship of a generation of laborers whose work shaped our community.”

Some of the reasons for the diocese deciding to destroy the building include safety and finance concerns. The Diocese would not comment about the demolition. Rockford’s current mayor, however, is against it.

“They are wanting to move forward with the demolition, which I again disagree with and don’t believe it is the highest and best use and I cannot find one person who can tell me otherwise,” said Mayor Tom McNamara.

Another diocese building set for demolition is the former convent next to the Cathedral of St. Peter School. The property was cited for violations of four city building codes.

Kristin Crowley

Kristin Crowley

Evening News Anchor

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