Member News

Michelangelo Sabatino: Historic Water Tower in Riverside, IL

by SAH News | Jul 10, 2018
SAH member and Illinois Institute of Technology School of Architecture Dean Michelangelo Sabatino recently spoke with CBS Chicago regarding the historic water tower in Riverside, Illinois.


In recent months, CBS 2 has profiled unique water towers throughout the Chicagoland area, all of which provide water to residents.

A water tower in the western suburbs is one that may be dry, but continues to provide community pride.

A water tower that rises high above the heart of Riverside and is located right across from the train station was built in 1869.

Rising high above the heart of Riverside and located right across from the train station stands a water tower that came to life in 1869.

“[It’s] something that you would find in medieval Europe. It was a landmark in that way, a beacon,” said Michelangelo Sabatio, the Dean of Illinois Institute of Technology’s College of Architecture.

Sabatio says the tower stopped pumping water more than a decade ago but remains standing.

“Leveling it is not a question,” he said. “That would be like taking a limb off your body.”

Not only is the tower sticking around, but the water tower recently underwent more than million dollar restoration.

“Residents here really value their history,” said Sabatio.

Residents used to be able to go inside the Riverside Water Tower and climb up to the top, but that stopped years ago.

“This is before litigation and fear entered the American mindset,” he said.

The Riverside Water Tower is surrounded by two well houses that look like they have fairy tale hats on them.

They currently house the Riverside Historical Museum, which is open on Saturdays.

Watch the video here


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