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Local

Video to feature Woodstock courthouse restoration

WOODSTOCK – A historic preservation grant will allow Woodstock to make a video showcasing the history of, and preservation efforts toward, the historical Old Courthouse and Jail.

The city was awarded $4,550 or about 75 percent of the estimated cost to make the video, City Planner Nancy Baker said. Baker said the video will be 10 to 12 minutes long and shown on the city’s website and YouTube. It also will be distributed on DVD at various locations in town.

“[The video will] educate the public about the importance of the building, the history of the building, and then increase awareness of the preservation needs,” Baker said.

Baker said the city will hire a professional videographer to start the video in May, with completion expected in the fall. The project wasn’t budgeted in the current fiscal year.

A five-year capital improvement program last fall laid out plans for the city to spend $2.06 million on restoration of the courthouse and sheriff’s house. An architect’s report suggested that an eventual private owner would need to spend an additional $2.7 million on repairs.

The video, Baker said is “not specifically a marketing piece, but would be a part of any marketing that we would do to find a future buyer.” It will cover the history of the building, outline current restoration projects and discuss plans for the future.

Woodstock is one of 13 Illinois communities sharing more than $138,000 in federal historic preservation grants.

Baker said the video likely would not have been possible without the grant money. “We would have been putting the money toward restoration,” she said.

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