Get a sneak peek at the newly-renovated Illinois Governor's Mansion

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Get a sneak peek inside the newly-renovated Governor's Mansion before it opens to the public! (WLS)

The Illinois Governor's Mansion is debuting its new look to the public Saturday after a multi-million dollar renovation.

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ABC7 Chicago Exclusive: Judy Hsu got the first look at the newly renovated Illinois Governor's Mansion.


ABC7 Chicago got an exclusive preview of the newly-renovated mansion.
Previously, the mansion, built in 1855, was falling apart. But now, the famous Lincoln bedroom is beaming with Illinois pride.

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The Illinois Governor's Mansion will reopen Saturday after a multi-million dollar renovation.



When the Rauners first moved in, the 45,000 square foot mansion had peeling paint, rotting wood on the porch, and leaking roof. The governor's office in the basement had storm water and sewer damage.

The damages lead to a $15 million renovation funded entirely by private donations and spearheaded by Illinois First Lady Diana Rauner. The Rauner family gave $1 million to the cause. JB Pritzker also made contributions to the renovation.

Though the repairs were extensive, the renovation maintained most of the mansion's original designs, including the original front doors.

The mission of the renovation was to restore the grandeur of the historic mansion.

Renovations also added a new visitor center and exhibit space for Illinois artifacts. That space will hold an art exhibit titled "Art in Illinois" when the mansion re-opens.

"For the first time we have an education center, a space that orients tour groups, school children to what this mansion is about," Rauner said.

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ABC7 Chicago's Judy Hsu got a sneak peek at renovations to the Illinois Governor's Mansion.


Guided tours will now take visitors through the formal first floor, which has new paint, new carpet and energy efficient windows. A refurbished grand staircase will take visitors upstairs.

The mansion is also now fully ADA compliant.

"Being able to restore a symbol of our state to give people a sense of possibilities, of what we can be, what we should be, into our third century, I think those things are very, very important," Rauner said.

The Illinois Governor's Mansion is the third-oldest Governor's mansion in the United States.
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