Coming on the heals of the successful million-dollar renovation of the house next to the Obamas in Hyde Park, General Contractor Foster Design Build is moving on to the "Bobby Franks" mansion in nearby Kenwood. In what promises to be a much larger but far smoother renovation, the former home of "crime of the century" victim Bobby Franks, kidnapped and murdered in 1924, will be renovated head-to-toe. The property had been owned by The DeLena Day School, which closed in 1991. Vacant ever since, the school sold the house at auction in 2008 for $484,000. It's unclear who owns the property now. According to a press release from the builder, they are working with the city's Department of Landmarks and Preservation and neighborhood groups to restore much of the home's original details in addition to fixing the roof and plumbing and replacing the windows. A daycare for so long, the property has been zoned commercial, and teardown was thought plausible. This latest announcement settles that. It's rumored on the message boards that the renovation will be featured on HGTV.
Update: Joe Zekas kindly informs us the current owner is Barbara Bowles.
·Historic "Bobby Franks" mansion to be renovated [Chicago Press Releases]
·For Obama's Chicago Neighbors, a difficult home renovation [NY Times]
·"Bobby Franks" mansion [Chicago Crime Scenes Project]