Making agreements, managing funds and moving forward. That captures the theme from Rockford City Council Monday night. First off, turning the old downtown Amerock building into a hotel and conference center gets unanimous support at City Hall.
3rd Ward Alderman Tom McNamara says moving funding around increases his support for the Amerock redevelopment project. To help pay down debt from future improvements, like creating a parking deck and fixing roads near the future hotel, aldermen moved money dedicated to the Whitman Street Interchange. Instead of the original plan, completely reconstructing Whitman which would cost $15 million, city leaders say repairs will be made to bridges and filling potholes at a $5 million price tag. This leaves roughly $10 million for other projects.
"Which will only help our potential Ingersoll sports facility as well as our Amerock building." -says McNamara.
While Ingersoll's funding still needs to go up for a council vote one item related to that redevelopment passes a memorandum of agreement between the city and state. Those two entities have to work together, deciding on whether to tear down the old RPS #205 administration building to create sports complex parking or preserve it as a historic space.
"The memo of understanding gives us a six-month window, city staff member Matt Vitner has stated in committee that they really want to shorten that and get to it very quickly." -says 1st Ward Alderman Tim Durkee.
Also in council Monday, with only 10 aldermen present, Tom McNamara moved to lay over approving Rural on Tap's liquor license until next week. McNamara says he wants all 14 aldermen to vote so look for that update next Monday.
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