Construction to begin soon on Memorial

Published 6:11 pm Monday, June 28, 2004

By By JAMES COLLINS / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- Another new addition to downtown Niles will soon be under way with the construction of the Veterans Memorial scheduled to begin in July.
Veterans Memorial Committee co-chairman Mike Ellis expects materials for the project to arrive on July 6 with construction to begin shortly after in mid-July.
The committee expects the memorial, which will be located just north of the promenade in Riverfront Park, to be finished by November.
Ellis said they have set a tentative date for its dedication to be on Nov. 7 at 2 p.m., the Sunday before Veterans' Day.
The Buchanan-based BG Construction will be completing the concrete and excavation work for the memorial. The work on the granite monument will be done by St. Joe Monument Works. The entire pentagon-shaped memorial will encompass an area of 54 feet by 51 feet. The granite monument's base will have a 9 foot diameter and will stand about 22 feet tall.
Ellis, who also played a key role in designing the structure, said the memorial will be about 83 feet away from the Riverfront Park amphitheater. He said it should not take away from the accessibility of the area.
Liebetrau said the visibility, accessibility and the lighting at Riverfront Park make it a great location for the memorial.
Through a large community fundraising effort that began in May 2003, the committee has raised about $107,000 thus far. This amount includes a recent donation of $15,000 from the Niles City Council.
Liebetrau said the support of the community has been overwhelming.
Ellis said the support of the community has far exceeded the committee's expectations.