v25-4 From the President

Vol. XXV No. 4 - WINTER 2014

By: Robert Remer

Oct 30, 2014

When you read this, Edgewater will have moved past an important milepost toward saving and landmarking Trumbull School. On November 13th, at Trumbull, several organizations will present to the entire community proposals for the reuse of the building. Not one proposes to tear down the building!

As reported last issue, Alderman O’Connor (40th) convened a work group of block clubs, business associations, neighboring Aldermen and EHS; they recommended that Trumbull only be used as a school (non-charter) or for housing. Demolition and commercial/retail uses were eliminated as not acceptable community uses. The EHS position is to preserve the building exterior as a landmark, and to save/landmark the fabulous prairie style auditorium. After presentations, the work group will recommend specifications to go the Board of Education for a Request for Proposal to purchase the building. We recommend that the successful purchaser must seek landmark status, which we believe would be forthcoming.

Your EHS board and members have made saving and landmarking Trumbull a top priority. We launched a petition drive and distributed hundreds of signs and fliers throughout the community. Over 1300 signatures were obtained in person and on a Save Trumbull website over this past summer. We worked closely with a number of state and local preservation organizations to get their best advice and support in this campaign.

Although our goal is not yet secure, I want to thank those of you who have answered the call to have a sign in your yard or to sign the petitions. Also we have had a great group working on this, including Martin Stewart, who was our champion petition gatherer and spent so much time going door to door in the WANT block club area; Dorothy Nygren, who has worked closely with all the block clubs to keep us all in the loop; LeRoy Blommaert, who co-chairs our preservation committee on this and has been tireless in promoting these efforts; Thom Greene and Kathy Gemperle, whose preservation smarts and devotion have kept us moving in the right direction; Vitaliy Vladamirov, who has done some great publicity for us, especially designing the campaign logo and the putting up the Save Trumbull website. We would also like to thank our friends from Preservation Chicago and especially Landmarks Illinois, who have provided us with excellent technical support. By the Spring issue of the Scrapbook, we hope to bring the really good news that Trumbull has been saved and will be a landmark.

So much has happened since the last issue and we have great plans upcoming for 2015 and 2016, but I must first thank those who did so much to make our 26th annual Home Tour a huge success financially and as an historic tour. Every year Kathy Gemperle has lovingly and professionally made the tour something to be proud of and something to serve as part of the Edgewater memory. She has taught us how every neighborhood in Edgewater is important and historic. And all that non-stop now for 26 years! She hasn’t been alone, however, especially with Betty Mayian, who makes sure each tour book is a financial success and who coordinates the tour volunteers; LeRoy Blommaert, who has been the bulwark of publicity, saturating Edgewater with the yellow home tour signs and mailings; the tour book needs a great team for research, layout, editing, photography and publicity, including Larry Rosen, Betsy Kane, Barbara Strauss, David Gemperle, Jonas Middleton and Marsha Holland. Thank you all.