Perspective, Inc. and John Koch Construction Receive 2017 Mayor’s Historic Preservation Awards

The 2017 Mayor’s Historic Preservation Award is presented to Perspective, Inc. for the restoration of the Illinois Central Railway Roundhouse and to John Koch Construction for the restoration of the home at 201 North Spring Avenue. The Mayor’s Historic Preservation Award is given annually to recognize meaningful achievements in historic preservation by an individual, organization, company, or agency through advocacy, education, investment, support, or service, and to stimulate greater public awareness and understanding of historic preservation efforts.

"These are great examples of how investing in historic structures in Sioux Falls makes such a positive difference,” says Mayor Mike Huether. “The Mayor’s Historic Preservation Award is one way to recognize those who work tirelessly to preserve these old but beautiful buildings.”

The Illinois Central Railway Roundhouse at 525 North Weber Avenue was the first of two roundhouses in Sioux Falls. It was built in 1918 but the wooden structure burned down within the first year. A second structure was built in 1920 using brick, steel, and heavy timbers and functioned as a two-bay roundhouse for servicing and repairing locomotives until the late 1970s. Perspective, Inc. has renovated the building to serve as its design studio. The original 18-foot doors where locomotives would enter the building have been retained. An addition to the original building provides two more bays to keep the symmetrical look of the roundhouse. The smoke jacks that were opened to release the exhaust also will be replaced by skylights that mimic the old smoke jacks and provide additional natural light. The project introduces a vision of redeveloping Weber Avenue as a gateway to the Falls and the history of the railroad downtown.

The home at 201 North Spring Avenue was originally owned by Percival H. Edmison, an enterprising individual who moved from Canada to Sioux Falls in 1872. He constructed several buildings in downtown Sioux Falls and was considered to have great faith in the future of Sioux Falls at the time he constructed his home on Spring Avenue. In the past 16 years, Sioux Falls native John Koch and his team have renovated more than a hundred homes, including eight in the Cathedral Historic District. During the renovation at 201 North Spring Avenue, Koch faced termite damage and a half century of neglect. When completed, the 4,000-square-foot restored home welcomed young professionals to the eight-unit apartment building, all eager to live close to downtown and become contributing neighbors.