Local businesses see boom since Route 173 project - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Local businesses see boom since Route 173 project

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MACHESNEY PARK (WREX) -

It's been two years since Machesney Park underwent a massive face lift along the Route 173 corridor.

The project expanded the stretch of road from Illinois 251 to Perryville Road to four and five lanes roads. It also added traffic signals, and updated the landscape.

"Since we've neared completion, we've added a dozen retail stores out there," Machesney Park Village Administrator, Tim Savage said.

Village leaders say they wanted to make the corridor more attractive to new businesses and easier for shoppers to get from store to store. Since completion, traffic has increased in that area more than forty percent. Village leaders say the increase in traffic has meant increases in revenue.

"We had about a five percent pop in retail sales tax growth over the previous years." Savage said.

But not everyone has reaped the benefits. Forrest Hills Lodge owner Jody Deery says, the project may have hindered business.

"When they widened the street, they took away out entrances," Deery said.

"Our parking lot was a lot bigger before because we had more land."

Other businesses like Chili's say with the extra traffic has made their store the busiest Chili's in the region.

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