Terrence Hickey is retiring at the end of June after working 18 years as a building inspector for the village of McCook. (Photo by Steve Metsch) 

Terrence Hickey is retiring at the end of June after working 18 years as a building inspector for the village of McCook. (Photo by Steve Metsch) 

McCook building inspector retires after 18 years

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By Steve Metsch

After 18 years of inspecting buildings, be it a modest bi-level house or a sprawling multi-million-dollar warehouse, Terrence Hickey is retiring from the village of McCook.

His retirement takes effect June 28, Mayor Terrance Carr said during the June 3 meeting of the village board.

“I’m jealous,” Carr said.

“(He’s worked on) a lot of developments. I hope you have fun in retirement and enjoy the rest of your life,” Carr said.

“We appreciate all your hard work,” the mayor added.

Hickey, 65, has lived in McCook the past 18 years. He grew up in Lyons on 45th Place near Lawndale Avenue.

Hickey was a carpenter by trade before he became a building inspector for the village.

Asked for his most memorable inspections, he smiled and paused.

“I don’t know. Too many inspections over the years. That whole building area where Reynolds (Aluminum) was is now all industrial. A lot of buildings went up in that location,” he said.

There are 12 buildings – each inspected by him – on the former Reynolds site that sits south of 47th Street and west of First Avenue.

He’s been busy the last couple of years inspecting new warehouse buildings going up on the old Electro-Motive property on the northeast corner of East Avenue and 55th Street.

One of those measures a whopping 997,000 square feet.

His job involves more than making sure lights turn on and off.

“I oversee all the permitting coming in, estimated costs of all projects, all the contractors have to have to be licensed and bonded.

“And, I grant occupancy to buildings once they’re completed and are compliant with building codes and ordinances,” Hickey said.

Being an inspector also means taking classes in order to keep up with things.

“I’ve been in school here ever since I started, trying to get certifications,” Hickey said with a laugh.

Although he’s retiring as building inspector, Hickey plans to find some sort of work to keep busy.

“I’m just going to take it one step at a time,” he said.

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