JWCC awaits word on repairs for Kinscherff Center

By Herald-Whig
Posted: Apr. 2, 2018 4:45 pm

QUINCY -- John Wood Community College has moved adult education classes, GED sessions and RSVP operations to the 48th Street campus after the Kinscherff Center at 122 N. Fifth was damaged due to a water leak in a neighboring building earlier this year.

JWCC President Mike Elbe said the college is awaiting information from its insurance carrier and from architectural experts on what it will take to repair the building.

Elbe said water lines broke in the building to the north of the Kinscherff Center and washed out some of the soil that had been supporting the wall between the two buildings.

"Part of that collapsed and the floor in our center dropped about nine inches in that corner. That's when we moved those programs to the main campus to let us assess the damage," Elbe said.

Workers from Waterkotte Construction Inc. stabilized the JWCC property so that furniture and equipment could be retrieved.

Elbe said he wants to squelch rumors that the building will be demolished.

"We're looking at ways to repair the wall so we can use the facility. That's something the board will probably look at in May," Elbe said.

The JWCC John E. and Wanda Lee Kinscherff Adult Education Learning Center was established in 2009 in the building donated by their son, J. Mike Kinscherff, president of Central State Bank. The son said his parents, who had been owners and operators of the bank, always valued education and were especially concerned about those whose educations were interrupted or who simply didn't have the opportunity to get an education.

Elbe said the building, located across Fifth Street from the Lincoln-Douglas Debate Memorial, has been a good fit for the school and the community.

"We value that location on the square and recognize that it helps serve people on the west side of town," Elbe said.

Before the building was evacuated, records indicate it served about 40 General Educational Development students per day, about 15 RSVP volunteers and housed eight to 10 teachers or staff members in literacy and other programs.

City officials did not immediately have details about the amount of damage done to 124 N. Fifth, where the water leak occurred. The former Irene's Cabaret has been closed since November 2016.