WIUM Tristates Public Radio

A One-Building Complex in Hancock County

Carthage, IL – Work will soon begin on the Charger Community Center in Carthage.

Carl Sandburg College President Tom Schmidt says the first phase of the project is the renovation of the existing auditorium.

Schmidt says eventually work will begin on a gymnasium and fitness center. "We believe strongly in the commitment that we have in that community," says Schmidt. "A one-building complex will hopefully come into existence and provide a broad range of services and recreational outlets for any and everybody down in the Hancock County community."

"That facility is hoped to be used by private businesses, local public schools, and other entities will make use of such a facility," says Schmidt. "It's an economic development initiative in part of Carl Sandburg College."

Schmidt anticipates it will cost roughly $2.8 million to renovate the auditorium. He hopes renovations will be complete by next spring.

Schmidt says it is not yet known how the college will pay to finish the final two phases of the project. "Estimates on the gymnasium and the fitness center fluctuate," Schmidt says. "Each are expected to be at the $2.8 million range."

"Given that Hancock County provides our second largest amount of local tax revenue, it is an economic driver for us to focus these financial resources and rejuvenate that complex," says Schmidt.