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State Grant for Shimer Square in Mt. Carroll

 Metcalf Hall at the former Shimer College in Mt. Carroll, Illinois.
Economic Growth Corporation
Metcalf Hall at the former Shimer College in Mt. Carroll, Illinois.

Ambitious plans for a former college in northwestern Illinois can now move forward thanks to the state. On Tuesday the governor announced capital grants for several major projects, including 1.5 million dollars for Shimer Square in Mt. Carroll.

That's the name of the re-development plan for the former Shimer College, put together by the Economic Growth Corporation based in Rock Island. It announced the 60 million dollar project in March of last year (2020), that'll transform the 14-acre campus into affordable housing and a business development education center.

With the state grant, Economic Growth has the 12 million dollars it needs for phase one, renovating Bennett and Hathaway halls, and the president's home known as Sawyer House. All phases should take five to 7 years to complete.

Founded in 1852, Shimer College closed in the 1970's, then the campus in Mt. Carroll became the Campbell Center for Historic Preservation Studies - and it closed in 2017.

A native of Detroit, Herb Trix began his radio career as a country-western disc jockey in Roswell, New Mexico (“KRSY, your superkicker in the Pecos Valley”), in 1978. After a stint at an oldies station in Topeka, Kansas (imagine getting paid to play “Louie Louie” and “Great Balls of Fire”), he wormed his way into news, first in Topeka, and then in Freeport Illinois.