Barrington house from 1870s will be moved to Barrington Hills

A Barrington house dating to the late 1800s is getting ready to take a ride.

Restaurateur Mark Hoffmann closed a deal last month for the former Wool Street Grill and Sports Bar, which will be converted into Moretti's Ristorante and Pizzeria, and for the historic house and land next door. Moretti's is expected to open this year.

Instead of razing the 118 Wool St. home for Moretti's parking, Hoffmann said he has donated it to Barrington Hills documentary filmmaker Jeff Baustert, who plans to move it to his family's property for use as a guesthouse. Workers preparing for the move were on the home's property Thursday.

Under a tentative plan, the house was to take off from Wool and Station streets at 5:15 a.m. Sunday for an estimated 7½-hour, 3-mile trip west to Barrington Hills. But village officials said Thursday the house, dating to sometime in the 1870s, now is expected to be transported in July.

Originally a barn on the rear of Charles Wool's property, the building was moved west to where it stands today and became a house for the Schroeder family in an unspecified year, according to documents culled by the Barrington Area Library. That would make this the second move for the home.

Barrington's director of development services, Greg Summers, said Thursday that Baustert has received permission for the move from the Illinois Department of Transportation, AT&T Inc., Union Pacific Railroad, Comcast Corp., Nicor Gas and ComEd.

However, Summers said, the move was postponed because Baustert still needs to meet Canadian National Railway insurance requirements. He said the village is prepared for the home's trip.

"We've got the route lined up," Summers said. "We know who will be affected by (utility shut-offs) and for approximately how long. We've got the staffing and the personnel that we're going to need, the temporary detour, barricades and things we're going to need all lined up."

Hoffmann, vice president and owner of Ala Carte Entertainment, had set a moving deadline of this weekend, but he said he did not want to be the "Scrooge" who razed the house for the Moretti's parking lot.

"If it takes him a little bit longer and I have to push back the opening, I'm willing to do that because of my desire to make sure that this thing happens," Hoffman said. "It's a unique and cool scenario."

Baustert, who is known for his love of historic homes, could not be reached for comment Thursday. He documented the conversion of Barrington's 119-year-old White House on Main Street from a former residence into a cultural arts and community center.

Summers said the house will be moved on a Sunday morning to minimize traffic disruption. Barrington police will close and reopen intersections as the house works its way to Main Street and west to Barrington Hills, where that village's authorities will be in charge of the final leg on Oakdene Road.

In 1999, Barrington officials oversaw the daylong move of the 70-year-old Wichman Blacksmith Shop. It was lifted off its foundation on Station Street and moved west to the Barrington Area Historical Society on Main Street.

Moretti's to take over Wool Street Grill in Barrington

  Moretti's Ristorante and Pizzeria plans to open in the former Wool Street Grill and Sports Bar near Barrington's Metra station. Restaurateur Mark Hoffmann bought the grill at 128 S. Wool St. and a historic house and land next door at 118 Wool. The house is to be moved next month to Barrington Hills instead of being torn down for a Moretti's parking lot. Bob Susnjara/
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