FREEPORT (WIFR) -- It’s been a year since there's been any official business inside the old city hall building in Freeport and some residents in the Pretzel City say that needs to change.
A Group of neighbors will address Freeport aldermen at Monday’s city council meeting. Those neighbors say they want city services to move back into the century old building because that's more cost effective for the city. Right now, Freeport is renting space for around seventy thousand dollars a year. Renovations could cost between 2 and 3 million dollars. Some say that investment would benefit the city in the long run.
“If you start tearing down these historic buildings there's no reason for people to visit," says Andy Dvorak a member of the Citizens for Saving City Hall group. “Tourism is going to be hurt, and foot traffic downtown. So we’re afraid if this building goes its going to be a cascading effect and we’re going to see downtown decline even further."
Earlier this year a statewide group, Landmark Illinois, named the building one of the ten most endangered historic places in the state. That designation does not prevent the building from being demolished by the city or a private developer.