Illinois State Fairgrounds renovations coming along

Several fairgrounds renovation projects will be complete for the 2019 Illinois State Fair, with more to come before the 2020 fair.

“It has been quoted as having almost $170 million worth of deferred maintenance issues on the fairgrounds.”

Warren Goetsch with the Illinois Department of Agriculture says the biggest project has been reconstructing the Coliseum, which was closed before the 2017 state fair.  

“It is on schedule to be open for this year’s fair.”

He tells Brownfield a couple of the “25 series” buildings that house beef, dairy and equine will also be re-roofed by August.

“And then hopefully in future years we will be able to do the same thing for the net and the next and the next. So, after a period of time we will have those barns almost completely rebuilt.”

Goetsch says other projects expected to be finished for the fair include new fans and lighting in the swine show arena and new rooves on the junior livestock building and dairy building.

Renovations of other buildings are in the design phase and will begin after the 2019 fair along with resurfacing roads.

Goetsch says roadwork and building maintenance is being done on the DuQuoin State Fairgrounds as well. 

Funds for the renovations have come from the $30 million capital budget for this fiscal year, the Illinois State Fairgrounds Foundation, the Illinois Department of Agriculture’s budget and emergency funds from the Capital Development Board.  

The 2019 Illinois State Fair will be August 8-18 and the DuQuoin State Fair runs August 23rd through September 2nd.

Interview with Warren Goetsch

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