Illinois accepts $10M bid to repair state fair coliseum

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Illinois officials have accepted a more than $10 million bid from a contractor to repair the deteriorating Illinois State Fair Coliseum.

The State Journal-Register reports that Springfield-based R.D. Lawrence Construction Co. was awarded the contract Friday. The company hopes to begin construction in the coming weeks.

A large focus of the renovation will be the roof. Funding for the project comes from $30 million the General Assembly allocated last year to repair the state’s two fairgrounds.

Inspectors in 2016 concluded that the coliseum was no longer safe after years of neglect , resulting in significant structural deterioration. Part of the three-tiered building dates to 1901.

R.D. Lawrence President John Goetz says the company aims to finish work by July 20 so the coliseum can be reopened for this year’s fair.