Demolition of White Hall begins

RANTOUL — Demolition has begun on White Hall, the hulking World War II-era relic on the former Chanute Air Force Base.

Machinery began tearing down walls on a structure that at one time housed hundreds of troops, countless offices, a post office, mess hall and ancillary services.

The building, constructed in the early 1940s, has been vacant for more than two decades since the closure of Chanute in 1993.

At the same time demolition is ongoing in one section, asbestos abatement continues in another.

Howard Sparrow, project manager, said about 75 percent of the asbestos abatement and cleanup project has been finished.

It will take a while, however, to get White Hall leveled, hauled away and the site excavated. About a year from now, the project should be finished.

An estimated 45,000 tons (more than 2,000 truck loads) of concrete and brick will be taken to an Urbana facility for recycling. Ninety-five percent of the material will be recycled.

Five archways from the building will be saved for the village of Rantoul. Village officials have also asked that some brick be saved, Sparrow said.

Categories (3):News, Environment, Living


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