South Side
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Demolition of 'Rooftop Pastor' motel begins

It took a three-month stand on the roof, dozens of volunteers and thousands of dollars to get to this point.

Now a vacant former motel will soon be a memory.

As this old building comes down, it is building new hope for the Woodlawn neighborhood.

Pastor Corey Brooks of New Beginnings Church, 6620 S. King Dr., camped out on top of the vacant motel across the street from his church for more than three months this winter and refused to leave until he raised the $450,000 needed to buy and demolish the building.

The generosity of the community and a $100,000 donation from movie director Tyler Perry put him over the top and brought him down to cheers from hundreds of church members and Woodlawn residents.

College students from across the country spent their spring break lending a hand towards tearing down the old motel last week.

Brooks hopes to build a community center here one day. His nonprofit, Project Hood -– an acronym for helping others obtain destiny -- aims to make it the best on the South Side. To do that, he hopes to raise $15 million to build the center.

Copyright © 2015, RedEye
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