The Greater Peoria EDC manages a federal designation through the Economic Development Administration (EDA) called an Economic Development District. As a part of our designation duties, the GPEDC leads the development of a Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) for our region every five years. That document is critical, acting as a virtual gateway for receiving federal grants for regional projects and strategies. Every federal agency asks the same question when receiving a grant application…”is it in your CEDS?”
We are preparing to submit our next CEDS, “Focus Forward”, to the federal government by the end of this year. In addition to our regional economic development strategies, the CEDS will include a list of key projects that are aligned with our goals. After an extensive review and scoring process, the following projects made the top of our list:
1. Madison Block Development The Kim Group
The Kim Group has proposed the re-development of Main and Madison with entertainment venues and office space, renovation of the Madison Theater, and the development of a multi-use facility with residential units, office space, entertainment, retail venues, and parking space.
2. Methodist College Expansion and Relocation Unity Point Methodist Proctor
Methodist College is in the process of renovating a building located at 5801 West War Memorial Dr. for a significant expansion. The new facility will include college classrooms, training laboratories, a library, faculty offices, support space, and other uses. The renovation is valued at $17.0 million. Adjacent to the main facility, a 56,100 square foot building will be developed by a private developer for Student Housing.
3. Fresh Food Hub Gifts In The Moment Foundation
The GITM Foundation’s Fresh Food Hub regional project seeks to support healthy eating, growth of the small farmer community, resource coordination within an improved food system, and growth of green job opportunities. The Food Hub rests on 10 acres of deeded land, located 4 miles east of the intersection of I-74 and Route 8, dedicated to the development of small veteran farm plots, an education center, and distribution processes. The proposed plan includes the further development of their infrastructure and programs.
4. Pioneer Parkway Extension City of Peoria
The extension of Pioneer Parkway from its current terminus at Allen Road westward to Trigger Road will unlock thousands of acres of land for industrial, commercial and residential development and significantly improve the economy of the metropolitan area. The full Pioneer Parkway Extension project budget is estimated at $72 million.
5. MBE Contractor Development Initiative Peoria County
Peoria County is seeking financial support for the continued growth and development of their Minority Business Enterprise Contractor Development Initiative, focused on supporting and growing minority-owned businesses in the construction field.
6. Manito Assisted Living Village of Manito
The Village of Manito would like support for the development of the new Manito Assisted Living Facility which will provide 20 assisted living units and 20 memory care units to be located on S. East Street in Manito, Illinois. The project is expected to generate multiple employment opportunities as well as generate new immediate and long-term revenue for the village.
7. Warehouse District Infrastructure Improvement City of Peoria
Over the past 4 years, the City of Peoria been working to improve the infrastructure in Peoria’s Warehouse District. While the infrastructure improvements are near completion, funds are needed to finalize the look and feel of the district. Funding of $15 million will allow the City of Peoria to complete the reconstruction of roads and sidewalks in the remainder of the district, from Persimmon to MacArthur. It will also support the construction of Commercial Street from Oak Street to Persimmon Street, providing access to the historic buildings along Washington Street and unlocking vacant riverfront land for development.
8. Front Street Corridor City of Pekin
The City of Pekin would like to improve Front and Distillery Streets by providing better access that safely expedites grain deliveries. The proposed improvements include a new curb and gutter, storm sewers, pavement widening and reconstruction, and the construction of a lane of travel with direct access to the Aventine facility along with truck stacking lanes for CHS and Illinois Corn Processing.
9. West Bluff Infrastructure Improvement City of Peoria
The City of Peoria has proposed substantial safety improvements in the West Bluff. The $24 million project includes the replacement of the MacArthur Highway bridge, which has a structural rating of 3 on a scale of 1-100. The bridge project, along with improvements to the remainder of the main West Bluff arterial streets, will serve as an economic engine for providing construction jobs, immediately improve motorist, bicyclist and pedestrian safety, and facilitate commerce in the West Bluff.
10. Freedom Parkway/Lakeshore Drive Extension City of Washington
The City of Washington would like to extend Freedom Parkway from its current terminus west of McClugage Road to N. Cummings Lane, and also Lakeshore Drive from US Business Route 24 to Freedom Parkway. The project would allow for development of a mix of uses on more than 100 acres of property.
11. Entrepreneurial Center and Programs Startup Peoria
Startup Peoria, now a program of the Greater Peoria EDC, would like to establish a talent and entrepreneurial development center for middle school through adulthood audiences to include a makerspace and STEM lab, coworking spaces, and business accelerator.
12. Mayor’s Summer Youth Program City of Peoria
The City of Peoria would like support for the implementation of their 8-week summer program that employs 40 students, 1 coordinator, 4 lead coaches and 4 temp coaches. The youth group assists Public Works with major projects that impact economic development and improve the infrastructure of the city. The project is budgeted at $245,000 for a two-year program.
13. Veterans Drive Improvement City of Pekin
The City of Pekin would like to complete Veterans Drive from Sheridan Road to Fischer Road with an interchange at I-474. This would result in completion of the Veterans Drive Corridor and provide direct interstate access to all major retail and employment centers in Pekin.
14. 5th Street Road Project City of Lincoln
The Fifth Street Road Project is an expansion of a current two-lane, rural cross section that conveys traffic east-west between the City of Lincoln and Mason County. The project area is bounded by Lincoln Parkway (Historic Route 66) to the east and I-55 to the west. The project will not only improve traffic conditions for an over-burdened roadway, but will leverage Lincoln’s proximity to numerous Illinois metropolitan areas for economic development purposes.