By KERRY SMITH, EDITOR, ST. LOUIS CONSTRUCTION NEWS AND REVIEW MAGAZINE
A 90-year-old building in downtown Belleville that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places is being transformed into loft living by Holland Construction Services.
The six-story building, located just south of Belleville’s downtown square, long stood as Hotel Belleville. In 1962, the Diocese of Belleville purchased it to operate the Meredith Home, a retirement living community. The city of Belleville acquired the property in 2010 and was preparing to demolish it several years later when SWIDA – the Southwestern Illinois Development Authority – and St. Louis-based Bywater Development proposed buying the building to build Lofts on the Square. The developer-owner team purchased the site from the city in April 2020 for $600,000.
Also in April 2020, Swansea-based Holland Construction Services began construction and renovation. Holland Senior Project Manager Tim Simon said construction costs total roughly $9.5 million to transform the structure into 47 independent living units.
The project received $7.5 million in federal tax credits from the Illinois Housing Development Authority.
“We’re working our way from the top floor on down,” said Simon. “Finishes are currently taking place on the sixth floor and we’re finalizing mechanical, electrical and plumbing rough-ins down to the first floor. We’re maintaining historic features throughout the building, including historic corridor walls, doors and frames. There’s a lot of ornate plaster work in this building that will be restored,” he added.
Efficiency, one-bedroom and two-bedroom living spaces are being constructed. Simon said a 3,000-square-foot space on the ground floor will be devoted to restaurant and retail.
Lofts on the Square project partners include Worn Jerabek Wiltse Architects and engineering consultant BWC.
The project is expected to be completed in July.