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Thompson Center Listed As One Of Nine 'Endangered' Structures In Chicago

CHICAGO (CBS) -- In an unusual move, the organization Preservation Chicago unveiled nine buildings this year as part of its "endangered" list, instead of its usual listing of seven structures.

The endangered buildings include churches, a power station, a bank and a government building that's been listed before. The organization's executive director Ward Miller said Jackson Park, one of the nine, is on the list because of the proposed development of the Obama Presidential Center to be built on the property. This is the third year in a row Jackson Park has been placed on the list.

Jackson Park, Osaka Gardens
(Credit: Preservation Chicago/Eric Allix Rogers)

"Make no bones about it. The proposed plans…will backhoe and destroy almost 20 acres of this legacy park land," Miller said. "This green, leafy site will now be compromised…with three very large buildings, all on a concrete plaza, and a tall museum building which is over 200 feet tall No other presidential library is of this scale and magnitude."

Among the churches in Chicago that Preservation Chicago is hoping will be saved is Holy Family Catholic Church located at 1080 West Roosevelt. In January the Chicago Archdiocese announced that Holy Family would consolidate the parish in July of 2019. It is the second oldest church in Chicago and it survived the Great Chicago Fire of 1871.

This year marks the third year that the James R. Thompson Center is being listed. It's also known as the State of Illinois building. It was built in 1985 and designed by architect Helmut Jahn. There's a bill (SB 886) on its was to JB Pritzker's desk for his signature that would allow for the building's sale.

James R. Thompson Center
(Credit: Preservation Chicago/Eric Allix Rogers)

Visit Preservation Chicago's site for a complete list and map of the buildings on 2019's "Most Endangered Buildings" as well as other structures that face an uncertain future.

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