Rockford Illinois: Midway Theater's Roof Partially Collapses

Posted Friday, March 23, 2012 --- 4:15 p.m.

From NBC15's sister station in Rockford Illinois:

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- A Downtown Rockford staple’s roof partially collapsed last night. No one was injured in the collapse.

The Midway Theater has sat along side East State Street in downtown Rockford for 93 years. Last night, some of the building came crashing down; however, it wasn’t reported to police until this morning.

Rockford Building Department officials tell us a 30-by-100 foot piece of roof at Midway Theater collapsed last night. Police were notified of the damage this morning when people passing by the building heard debris falling from the ceiling and called 911. Portions of East State Street in front of the theater were closed while the rest of the building was inspected.

Seth Sommer from the Rockford Building Dept. said, “We've been in there over the past few years and knew that there was some deterioration and mold issues. It's clear from just looking at the roof that it's collecting water, just sitting on the roof and just causing further deterioration in there."

Inspectors say that the walls of Midway Theater remain in good condition, although if the building does not receive care like it has in the past several years, more of the structure could collapse.

The Rockford Area Arts Council located next door to also has been evacuated because of the collapse and remained closed because of worried over extra damage.

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