Historic Springfield church moved to new location

The First Spiritualist Church in Springfield was moved to a new location to make way for a casino.

Crews moved the 130-year-old historic building about 600 feet to allow for construction of the new MGM Springfield Casino. Reverend John Sullivan sold the church to MGM in 2013 as it desperately needed renovations.

For weeks, the church was slowly raised off its foundation and onto a set of wheels before it was moved very slowly to its new spot. Moving the church cost $800,000.

"We’re glad to see that it’s being kept, so that we have part of history here with this new MGM complex," said Sullivan. Once the church is moved, it will be part of the casino’s design though officials do not know what it will be yet. Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno said moving the church to the casino property is part of a project dedicated to historical preservation and bringing more jobs to the city.

On Wednesday, the former YWCA building was torn down as part of casino construction. MGM Springfield is expected to open in 2018.

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