By Jessica Geraci, WIFR, April 7, 2014
ROCKFORD (WIFR) — Rockford’s former Amerock building is likely on its way to becoming a multi-million dollar hotel and convention center after the city council approves a more than $50 million development plan on Monday.
Developer Gorman and Company plans to build a 150 room hotel and conference center to the tune of $52 million dollars. The company has until the end of 2016 to put up the complex in order to take advantage of a 45% percent tax credit from the state and federal government. The agreement passed 13-1. Dozens of Rockford neighbors turned up at City Hall for the vote, most of them in support of the project.
“Rockford needs something to move it forward economically and to inspire the people to get excited about the city once again because this is something that’s good for the entire city,” says Karen Lindstrom.
“It’s really an area that’s rich in ethic history, and rich in people and has a I think a great potential for redevelopment and this is part of it,” says Valeri DeCastris.
The city of Rockford has a lot of work to do as part of the development agreement. The city has pledged to build a new parking deck on Cedar St. by October 2016 and convert South Main Street into a two way road by March of 2016.
The hotel complex is expected to create 250 construction jobs, plus hundreds more full and part time positions once it opens.