Elgin housing authority names building after Bob Gilliam

Housing authority names building after late Bob Gilliam

 
 
Updated 6/9/2016 6:10 PM
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  • The late Bob Gilliam's wife, Marianne Gilliam, and his daughter, Soynia Gilliam, released balloons in his honor during the Housing Authority of Elgin's ceremony.

      The late Bob Gilliam's wife, Marianne Gilliam, and his daughter, Soynia Gilliam, released balloons in his honor during the Housing Authority of Elgin's ceremony. Brian Hill | Staff Photographer

  • The Housing Authority of Elgin held a ceremony Thursday dedicating the new six-story building at 130 S. State St. to the late councilman and commissioner Bob Gilliam.

      The Housing Authority of Elgin held a ceremony Thursday dedicating the new six-story building at 130 S. State St. to the late councilman and commissioner Bob Gilliam. Brian Hill | Staff Photographer

  • "We are extremely proud of the work that has taken place in the last 18 months. This project would not have been possible if not for the board of commissioners, particularly the late Bob Gilliam" said Damon E. Duncan, CEO of the Housing Authority of Elgin.

      "We are extremely proud of the work that has taken place in the last 18 months. This project would not have been possible if not for the board of commissioners, particularly the late Bob Gilliam" said Damon E. Duncan, CEO of the Housing Authority of Elgin. Brian Hill | Staff Photographer

  • Roughly 150 people attended the ceremony Thursday morning held by the Housing Authority of Elgin.

      Roughly 150 people attended the ceremony Thursday morning held by the Housing Authority of Elgin. Brian Hill | Staff Photographer

  • One of the rooms at the new "Robert Gilliam Building," which is part of Central Park Towers in Elgin.

      One of the rooms at the new "Robert Gilliam Building," which is part of Central Park Towers in Elgin. Brian Hill | Staff Photographer

  • Soynia Gilliam looks out of the new building to downtown Elgin, where her father used to live.

      Soynia Gilliam looks out of the new building to downtown Elgin, where her father used to live. Brian Hill | Staff Photographer

  • The movie room in the new Bob Gilliam Building in Elgin.

      The movie room in the new Bob Gilliam Building in Elgin. Brian Hill | Staff Photographer

  • The fifth floor terrace garden of the new six-story building by the Housing Authority of Elgin.

      The fifth floor terrace garden of the new six-story building by the Housing Authority of Elgin. Brian Hill | Staff Photographer

A new affordable housing building for seniors in Elgin was dedicated Thursday to the late councilman Bob Gilliam.

Roughly 150 people attended the ceremony celebrating construction of the six-story building at 130 S. State St., officially named "Robert Gilliam Building."

The building is part of a $33 million project by the Housing Authority of Elgin that included renovating the 11-story building next door at 120 S. State St.

"We are extremely proud of the work that has taken place in the last 18 months. This project would not have been possible if not for the board of commissioners, particularly the late Bob Gilliam" Damon E. Duncan, CEO of the Housing Authority of Elgin, said in a news release.

The project, a public and private partnership, yielded 150 affordable housing units and 14 market rate units, all energy-efficient. The first residents of the new building moved in December; the whole campus is called Central Park Towers.

Mayor David Kaptain, Kane County Board member Cristina Castro, police Cmdr. Ana Lalley, Fire Chief John Fahy, and Antonio Riley, Midwest regional administrator for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, were in the crowd.

Gilliam was a longtime commissioner of the Housing Authority of Elgin. Gilliam's wife, Marianne, and his daughter, Soynia, released two white balloons in his honor. Elgin's city hall complex also was named in Gilliam's honor after he died in December 2014.

The ceremony was followed by self-guided tours of the building, which includes a community room, theater room, green rooftop gardens, two rooftop decks, fitness room, physical therapy and on-site medical screening.

Resident Elizabeth Odumuyiwa, the residents' council president, said she was excited to live in the new building, and joked that she doesn't know what to do with all the extra cabinet space.

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