On Friday Steve Kelley, a longtime volunteer for the Pleasant Home Foundation Restoration Committee and member of its Board of Trustees, informed the Preservation Oak Park FB group that the historic structure’s original wood flooring had been removed, cut into pieces, and thrown in a dumpster. When asked why this was happening, a site supervisor told Kelley it was because the floors were “old.”
Not an Oak Parker but those in oak park who disagree with the park district action here need to issue swift accountability for this. This sort of destruction and ignoring preservationist input is really shocking in 2023.
As a Chicagoan I don't understand how this was decided, or allowed to happen. My first reaction is that this is a permanently destructive attack on any pretense that the Village of Oak Park has to being interested in, or proud of, its historic architecture. Nobody who loves American architecture will accept this shocking brutalisation of one of Oak Park's most conspicuous landmarks.
I grew up right across the street from Pleasant Home and used to love watching the parties that would take place throughout the summer. I also have fond memories of visiting the home for tours on numerous occasions. I am absolutely appalled by this decision and believe the people responsible for this decision need to be held accountable.
Thanks you for sharing -- this is unacceptable.
The replacement of the flooring was clearly mentioned in the park board's 2023 budget. Did no one on the Pleasant Home's board even read the budget and what might affect their property?
This act amounts to sanctioned vandalism.
And the explanation as to why makes no sense.
The hardwood floors do not provide the lion’s share of structural integrity- the sub flooring does that.
So, ok, if “someone was going to fall through” the floors, the plan should have been to take up the hardwood, remove and replace the subfloors, then re- use (and maybe sand and refinish) the hardwood flooring.
I can only assume that the right way to handle this was deemed too much work- and not worth he effort, by someone who has no appreciation for historic structures.
What a shame.
I’d like to hear what the Historic Preservation Commission feels about this.
This ripping up and trashing of historic property seems to go against the commissions mission…..
Mission: The Historic Preservation Commission evaluates proposals affecting the Village's landmarks and historic districts. The Commission considers compatibility of development with long- range preservation of historical sites and recommends sites for historic landmark designation.
This is pitiful.
Is this happening right now? If that flooring is still in the Dumpster, is anyone planning to salvage it? Sounds like good wood that could be used elsewhere—even in some historical context.