Originally Posted Online: Dec. 07, 2012, 8:39 pm
Last Updated: Dec. 07, 2012, 11:43 pm

Depot advocates only halfway to funding its relocation

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By Dawn Neuses dneuses@qconline.com

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Photo: Todd Mizener
Signs along 12th Avenue, paid for by The Moline Preservation Society, call for people donate money to help save the old Moline train depot located at 2012 River Drive. The organization has raised $76,000 of their $155,000 goal.

MOLINE — In 10 weeks, the Moline Preservation Society has raised $76,000 in pledges and in-kind donations from people who want to help relocate the DRI & NW Depot at 2012 River Drive rather than see it demolished.

That's approximately one half what is needed, and on Tuesday, the society will ask aldermen for an extension of time so it can reach the $155,000 goal.

"If the council does not grant an extension, we still have one week and people will realize it is down to the nitty-gritty," said Diann Moore, preservation society president.

On Oct. 9, the council delayed a vote on the proposed sale of the depot to the Illinois Department of Transportation until Dec. 18.

The delay was designed to give the society time to raise the $155,000 needed to move the 112-year-old building — a local historic landmark — to the Western Illinois University Riverfront Campus.

The depot is in the way of the proposed new Interstate 74 bridge project and needs to be moved or demolished. IDOT offered to spend up to $1 million to buy the land and the building, and move the depot to the campus. However, IDOT is requiring Moline contribute, too, and the city's costs are estimated at $155,000.

In late September, aldermen decided not to put the $141,000 IDOT will pay the city for the land and building toward the costs Moline has to cover, and the society began working to raise all of the money.

WIU wants to use the depot as a welcome center on its new campus and is prepared to spend $300,000 to restore it.

Ms. Moore said the society has received $60,000 in pledges and $16,000 in an in-kind donation for plumbing. "I think we have done very well in 10 weeks," she said.

She said the society has applied for numerous foundation grants and is waiting to hear back. Another grant the society wants to apply for is not taking applications until January, she said.

The society is also talking with the skilled trades about possible in-kind donations through the apprentice programs.

Pledges will not be called in until January, Ms. Moore said, adding she hopes others consider supporting the depot relocation. "This is a way of saving our history, and saves our environment, too, as the building won't end up in the landfill. It is an adaptive re-use and a plus for everybody," she said.

Donations do not need to be monetary, Ms. Moore said. Others have assisted with advertising or other in-kind services, offered possible funding ideas and leads, or talked to groups and individuals about the depot and its relocation.

"If you believe in his project, you can show your bodily support Dec. 11 by attending the city council meting. If you believe in this project, ask your friend to support it, too," Ms. Moore said.

The society will update aldermen during the committee of the whole meeting, which begins at 6:30 p.m. on the second floor of city hall, 619 16th St.



How to help

The Moline Preservation Society is raising $155,000 to cover Moline's portion of expenses for relocating the DRI & NW Depot from its current location to the new Western Illinois University Riverfront campus.

A total of $76,000 in funds and in-kind donations/services are currently pledged. The society has until Dec. 18 to have the rest pledged.

To make a pledge go to savethemolinedepot.com. After the goal is reached, those who made pledges will be contacted with additional information.

The Moline Preservation Society is a 501(c)3 organization and all donations are tax deductible.