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Kenwood Mansions Being Converted Back Into Single-Family Homes

By Sam Cholke | March 23, 2017 5:37am
 God Squad has sold its historic mansion to an investor that wants it to become a family home again.
God Squad Selling House
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KENWOOD — A former foster care center next to Rainbow Push Coalition headquarters is going on the market looking for someone who wants to turn it back into a single-family home.

The house at 4941 S. Drexel Blvd. boasts 12 bedrooms, eight bathrooms and more bedrooms in a coach house in the back for $725,000.

It’s the latest in a string of nonprofits putting their historic mansions on the market hoping to find someone who wants to live in them.

It’s been a long time since the mansion on Drexel was used as a home.

Until late last year, the historic mansion was the home of the God Squad Inc. church. The church bought the mansion in 1986 from the Illinois Children’s Home, according to Cook County property records, which had used the house for foster care.

The building is now owned by an investor who bought it from the church for $350,000 late last year, according to property records.

Realtor Tuwanna Dennis said the current owner wants to sell it to someone who will turn it back into a single-family home.

“I’ve received some interest to restore it as a mansion,” Dennis said.

She said the building will need to be gutted, but there is a lot of historic woodwork that can be salvaged and reused.

The building is the latest in a string to go on the market looking for a buyer interested in a restoration project.

Earlier in March, the Swift Mansion in Bronzeville went on the market for $2.7 million as the owners consider retiring from running a prisoner re-entry program out of the historic home.

Last year, Creative Mansion Children’s Academy sold its historic mansion in Kenwood to a new owner who planned to convert it into a single-family home.

Kenwood has long been more of a bedroom community than nearby Hyde Park or Bronzeville and the recent changes are reasserting that definition. In 2013, residents actively pushed for the dominance of residential, nixing plans for a bed and breakfast in two historic Frank Lloyd Wright-designed mansions as an unwanted intrusion of commercial business.

There are still several major homes owned by institutions though, particularly the Croatian Franciscan Custody of the Holy Family, which still owns two very large mansions in Kenwood.