MT. VERNON, IL — After an inspection, The City of Mt. Vernon has reported a building that houses the Antioch International Assembly dangerous and dilapidated.
The owner of the Antioch International Assembly building called the City Engineer’s Office Monday about a partial floor collapse inside and when inspectors returned Tuesday they found the situation had worsened. The department then notified the police, fire department and the mayor’s office and declared the building unsafe. Authorities immediately evacuated everyone near the 200 block of South 9th street and blocked it with barricades. The fire department is calling the area a “collapse zone.”
Organizers for the Mt. Vernon Fall Fest say it will continue on September 24 and 25 as planned with a few modifications.
The #618Strong Fall Fest in Mt. Vernon will go on as planned with modifications despite the shutdown of 9th Street in Mt. Vernon between Broadway and Jordan Street due to a building beginning to collapse.
“We are moving the vendors that are normally in that block to Jordan Street between Joe’s Pizza and 7th Street,” stated Festival Director, Angela Schrum. “We have met with City and Emergency Management Officials regarding the building, which is located in the middle of the block in which vendors would typically be located. Through that collaboration, we worked out a plan to relocate the Vendor Marketplace and also the Downtown Mt. Vernon Development Corporation Cruise-In on Friday evening.”
The blocks of 9th Street where the Cruise-In was to be held are not affected by the collapsing building, but the cordoned off block would separate the event from the rest of the festival.
“For the safety of everyone volunteering and attending the festival, we decided to move the Cruise-In to Jordan Street between 10th Street and 12th Street,” Brian Harland, DMDC Director commented. “Moving the Cruise-in location keeps the entire event easily accessible without going through the affected block.”
Mt. Vernon Fall Fest begins at 5 p.m. Friday with the Vendor Marketplace, Cruise-In, Kid & Teen Zones & Free Live Entertainment on the SSM Health Good Samaritan Hospital Stage. The festival continues at 9 a.m. Saturday with the Marketplace, Kid & Teen Zones and more. The Crossroads Community Hospital #618Strong Parade will take place at 1 p.m. along Main Street and 10th Street. Mt. Vernon welcomes back Southern Illinois native, Drew Baldridge as the headliner Saturday evening.
“Everything for Fall Fest is still going on as planned,” Festival President Jason Hulbert reiterated. “We are just relocating the Vendor Marketplace and Cruise-In to error on the side of caution and keep people away from the unstable building.”
More information can be found at MTVFestivals on Facebook or enjoymtvernon.com/events.
For now, the fire department urges residents to be cautious near the area.
The city says they’ll begin the building demolition Wednesday morning.