A section of the sidewalk along the south side of Harvard Street was closed to pedestrians recently, after municipal officials learned that one their own buildings was crumbling. John Doss, director of public works for the village, said bricks along the top of a vacant building at 1000 Beloit Ave. are coming loose and pose a safety hazard to people walking in the area.
Barricades and signs warning people not to walk along the north face of that building were installed, and Doss said department employees went onto the roof to remove the most immediate hazards. Students attending the nearby middle school, and customers of a small grocery at the intersection, provide a steady flow of pedestrian traffic in the area.
“It just needs a little bit of work so it’s not dangerous,” Doss said.
A contractor was expected to repair the roof line of the building very soon, said Doss. It does not appear that the integrity of the structure has been jeopardized, he said, only that some of the decorative bricks have loosened.
Village council members voted to purchase the mixed-use building in December 2006, promising to restore the blighted structure for a public use. No work has been done on the property, however, and the recently adopted budget includes no earmarks for that site.