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Mine subsidence closes Lutheran High School building

Springfield's Lutheran High School
Lutheran High School
Springfield's Lutheran High School

Lutheran High School in Springfield is dealing with a major structural problem due to previous underground coal mining.

The school’s board of directors sent out a letter to parents this week saying engineers from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Hansen Engineering and the Illinois Mine Subsidence Insurance Fund have all done inspections of the property in the past week. It says their recommendation is that the building at 3000 West Washington Street not be occupied at this time.

Mine subsidence, as the letter defines it, is "a sinking of the ground due to the failure of the underground structures remaining from historical coal mining in the area."

The State Journal-Register reported cracks in walls and dropping of floors was noticed in the past week

Despite the concerns, the board said it is “actively assessing the property” and working to prepare for the fall term. It also clearly states “There will be school this fall!”

The letter said they are seeking alternative location opportunities to be prepared with a relocation plan.

“As a body of Christ, we will work together to identify temporary facility options as needed,” it read.

Updates will be posted on the school website. As of last fall, the school listed an enrollment of nearly 150 students.

Lutheran High School Summer Camp has been relocated and will continue with the final weeks being held at Our Savior’s Lutheran School.