As General Motors Plant Starts To Come Down, Legacy Center Is Planned

JANESVILLE (WKOW) -- The City of Janesville has been notified that demolition work at the former General Motors Plant is scheduled to begin on or around April 16.

Asbestos and universal waste removal was completed in the main plant late last week. 

As the building comes down the Blackhawk Community Credit Union wants to keep the GM Plant alive with a Legacy Center. 

"As the GM building goes down you think of the Legacy Center that rises," said Blackhawk Community Credit Union Branch Manager, Lucy Newell-Anderson. "That we honor and we think about how GM affects Janesville. It's huge, it still is huge." 

The Blackhawk Community Credit Union came into existence because of the GM Plant.  

"In 1965 Blackhawk Community Credit Union was created by some union members that opened up a suitcase and started giving loans," said Newell-Anderson. 

It provided financial services to the employees of Fisher Body, the Union Auto Workers and General Motors.

This Legacy Center is being created to remind future generations how GM played an important role in their city for decades. 

"When I think about General Motors coming down it makes me sad," said Newell-Anderson. "I didn't work there but it's part of who I am. I grew up here."

The design of the tribute to the plant isn't complete, but former employees will be a part of the planning committee.

"What do we want the art to look like?" said Newell-Anderson. "Do we want to have a memorial wall? Do we want to incorporate pieces from the actual General Motors Plant that is now located at different facilities? It can be anything that these people want it to be but making sure that we honor all the people who started with General Motors." 

The exact location hasn't been determined but they do have a targeted area. 

"The Legacy Center is going to be located in downtown Janesville," said Newell-Anderson. 

The Legacy Center won't get underway for another year or two. 

In the mean time, Professional Industrial Appraisal LLC will be auctioning off left over items from the Janesville plant. 

The four-day online auction will begin Monday, April 23, 2018. 

As for the demolition of the GM Plant, there isn't a specific timeline but if things go as planned the target is to be done in 9-months. 

For more information on the Legacy Center go to and click on the Legacy Center link. 

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