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updated: 1/30/2014 6:46 AM

Chicago greenhouse Fern Room to close for repairs

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Associated Press

Chicago's Garfield Park Conservatory is inviting visitors to see the historic Fern Room and its tropical plants before it closes for repairs on Sunday.

The Fern Room's glass roof was damaged by hail during a 2011 storm. It has a temporary roof made of polycarbonate.

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Renovation is expected to be complete in the fall. The work will involve removing the temporary roof materials and installing quarter-inch laminated glass and overhead vents. The Chicago Park District last month approved a $5.4 million contract for the final rehabilitation work on the conservatory.

The huge greenhouse on the city's West Side is one of the largest conservatories in the country and is more than 100 years old. It houses several exotic and century-old plant species.

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