“It’s not a home run in terms of the historic preservation community, and it is a difficult building at best from an economic perspective to try to come up with a use that would be viable,” Houseman said. “We want to transform the Rantoul Street area, and it’s important to have respect for historically significant buildings, but that can’t be the only factor that ends up getting taken into account.”
Windover Construction President Lee Dellicker has also said it is not “economically feasible” to restore the Hotel Trafton. The company purchased the building from North Shore Veterans Counseling Services, which was using it as a rooming house for veterans. The rooming house will move into a nearby building at 45 Broadway, another historic building that had been scheduled for demolition.
“To be able to save another building that was slated to come down is great, and it opens up the site for what I think will be a project that will bring strong economic development to the whole area,” Dellicker said.