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St. Charles aldermen resist landmark demolition

ST. CHARLES – St. Charles aldermen are resisting a proposed residential development that would result in the demolition of a city-designated historic landmark.

“I simply don’t support this,” 4th Ward alderman Jo Krieger said of a concept plan for Foxwood Square, the city block bound by South Fifth, Indiana, South Sixth and Ohio avenues.

The property includes the Raymond Judd House, 309 S. Sixth Ave., which the city designated a landmark in 2000.

City documents indicate it was named after the owner who lived there from 1902 to 1931 and is the only true example of Mission architecture in St. Charles.

SGC Builders is under contract to buy the house and the property’s remaining development sites.

On behalf of SGC Builders, Michael Ciampi of Michael Vincent Homes presented a concept plan for Foxwood Square during Monday’s Planning and Development Committee meeting.

Approved plans from 2007 allow the property to have 10 two-family units in five buildings and two condominium units in the Judd House. Since then, two townhouse units have been built on the block’s northeast corner, according to city documents.

Under the new plan, the townhouse development would be completed to bring the number of residential units to 15, and the Judd House would be demolished.

The revised layout would, Ciampi said, allow for more parking and better access for emergency vehicles and garbage collection.

First Ward alderman Ron Silkaitis said he wanted an independent assessment done on the Judd House. He won’t move forward until he is told the building isn’t worth saving, he said.

“You are aware this is a landmark property,” he said.

His colleagues agreed.

Fourth Ward alderman Jim Martin said he and Krieger insisted Judd House remain when the original developer presented plans for the area.

“It’s inconceivable we could accept anything less at this point,” Martin said.

Because a concept plan was presented, no formal action was taken.

It was simply a chance for the developer to get informal input before proceeding with detailed plans and architectural drawings.

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