. . .initially, in Nov 2017, the Tabernacle wasn't structurally sound and that the bats and raccoons had made it unsafe to be in. That the cost to clean it was 32K and that Dewberry Inc. would not enter the building without cleaning it. Then in Feb 2018, Fehr Graham was hired to do the structural evaluation without the cleaning. The full report and a video taken at the time is linked below. They found the building to be in very good condition for a 105-year-old building.
These are quotes from the Fehr Graham report.
“The roofing is supported by a large, metallic space truss. The truss consists of metal double angles and plates connected at joints with both rivets and bolts. There are no significant signs of corrosion or deflections in the steel members or connections.”
“Overall, the building has several structural concerns that should be addressed. The holes to the building's siding and roofing should be repaired immediately to prevent any further water damage to the structure. If these immediate repairs are made to the building, the building could remain vacant without any further repairs for the next 5-10 years”
Some of our Save the Tabernacle group were able to enter the Tabernacle and take a few photographs in Nov 2017. The picture on this page was taken that day. We were all surprised how little "mess" the animals really had made. Frankly, growing up on farms, all of us have seen much worse. We as a group fought for quite some time to have the Park District close up the holes where the animals were getting inside. Most of the holes have been repaired now, except for one on the south side of the building where you can still see tracks in the snow.
Animals can be kept out with proper maintenance. Also keep in mind as you read the Fehr Graham report that we got a new roofing estimate of $48,904 from Mas Roofing which was approx. $13K less than what Fehr Graham reported.
Click here to read the full Fehr Graham Structural Audit: https://freeportparkdistrict.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Oakdale-Auditorium-Structural-Audit.pdf
The summary of costs related to the repairs is included. The report states that it would cost between 127K - 147K to repair the four footings, replace 4 feet of siding and replace the roof sheeting and shingles.
Click here to view the video taken of the inside of the Tabernacle in Feb 2018 by Fehr Graham: https://vimeo.com/290984240 We are sure after you view this video that you will agree with us that the Tabernacle is still in really decent shape.