“We need to take this 125-year-old roof out of service and replace it with a new roof.”

Kenoshanews.com reports a story about a slate roof of the historic Southport Beach House that needs repairs.   The city council  voted 12-4 against spending $316,000 on replacing the slate roof  with asphalt shingles.  They also voted 13-2 against spending $22,000 to repair the roof.   A second group, the Park commission, voted 3-2 in favor of the replacement and 5-0 to turn down the repair bid.


A few more details:
  • The beach house has been the center of debate for the last 5 years
  • Direct quote – “The roof is not leaking.  So, there are no leaks.”
  • The building is on the National Register for Historic Places.

The Big Slate Question?

Based on the voting, more council members would rather spend 14x more money to have a brand new asphalt shingle roof than to repair the existing slate roof (4-2).  It should be noted that most voted negatively to both  possibilities.

From an outsiders perspective (knowing nothing about the structure or financial situation), this decision seems  fairly obvious.  Is it better to spend less money, preserve the historical aspect of the building, and get the finest roofing material both aesthetically and from a longevity perspective OR spend 14x as much money for an asphalt shingle roof that will look like every other roof and will need to be replaced in 15 years.