Home razed despite neighbors’ concerns

Home at 138 Main Street, Rockford was demolished.

Home at 138 Main Street, Rockford was demolished. Photo by Cliff Hill

Friday, April 17, demolition on Main Street, Rockford, Photo by Cliff Hill

Friday, April 17, demolition on Main Street, Rockford, Photo by Cliff Hill

Main Street Rockford resident Sonja Glass believes the city should have given her more warning that the house next to hers was coming down. She also believes the demolition may not have been safe due to possible asbestos.

Glass has been living in a historic home next to 138 Main, which was demolished on Friday, April 17. The home was purchased by Dave Pederson and had been under ownership of the City of Rockford prior to demolition so local law enforcement and fire fighters could practice in the structure. It was deeded back to Pederson the evening of Thursday, April 16.

Demolition of home at 138 Main Street, Rockford.
Demolition of home at 138 Main Street, Rockford. 

Photo by Cliff Hill

“Mine is the last house standing,” said Glass of her stretch of Main Street. She said to the north of her house Wolverine World Wide had taken out two residential homes to make way for the parking lot now there.

Several years ago Pederson had demolished one home and moved another on the south of her, also for parking.

Glass awoke at dawn on Friday to the sound of the demolition, and dust she is worried contained asbestos. She thinks the demolition permit was improperly filled out and “rushed through.”

“The way this was done was so rotten,” she said. Another neighbor has been campaigning to save the home and believes it had historic value. Lynn McIntosh has been dismayed to see the three residential structures disappear over the years.

The final home remaining, which Glass’ father owns, was once owned by Jackson Coon, a well-known former business person and important figure in Rockford history.

Pederson said the house was in very bad shape structurally, even before the damage caused by fire rescue practice.

He said it had a non-functioning heating system and was not worth moving.

Pederson said he wasn’t certain of his plans for the property, which is currently zoned residential.

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