2011 was another great year for the Quincy/Adams County, Illinois region. The following is the “Business Developments” section of the speech our 2010/2011 GREDF chair, Connie Schroeder, gave during our 2012 Annual Meeting on January 11, 2012.
Our job at GREDF is to tell our story, that is, the story of Quincy and Adams County, Illinois. We do this in letters, emails and phone calls, on our website and most importantly, through personal contact with current and prospective businesses and you, our stakeholders.
We’re continuously refining our message and we’re blessed to have a wealth of resources about which to boast: transportation infrastructure, skilled workforce, educational opportunities, arts and culture.
We find examples and success stories help our message become more real to our audience. So please allow us to tell our story to you and share some good news from 2011 as we embark on a new chapter in 2012.
2011 Business Developments in Quincy and Adams County, Illinois:
- Prince Agri Products, which you’ll remember built a 150,000 square foot, $18 million dollar facility in 2010, announced this past September the acquisition of a new product line called Animate. The company has added over 40 jobs to the Quincy-area economy during the past 2 years and currently employs over 100 people. They continue to recruit for head-of-household positions in manufacturing, laboratory, quality supply chain and I.T.
- Titan International purchased the former Huck Fixtures facility and plans to put part of its wheel production in the 100,000 square foot building this year. Titan reported record sales in the third quarter of 2011, up 79percent from the third quarter in 2010.
- Federal Express broke ground on a new $1.5 million dollar, 28,000 square foot facility located on six acres in the Wismann Ridge Business Park in August.
- The Spin Screed, the world’s lightest-weight roller screed which was invented and built in Quincy, was chosen by contractors to be used during a major remodel of the Boeing Manufacturing Plant in Everett, Washington. The plant is considered the largest in the world. Joe and Marlene Churchill, co-owners of Spin Screed, Inc., have seen their small business grow from its start 11 years ago to the point where the Spin Screed is now being used in major projects worldwide.
- U.S. Cooler is celebrating 25 years as a leading manufacturer of commercial walk-in freezers & coolers. During its history, the family-owned company has preserved a historic firehouse in downtown Quincy for its corporate headquarters and adapted green technology into its products. U.S. Cooler currently employs over 65 people in 7 States.
- Timewell Tile continues to grow in its Golden facility, the former home of the Methode Plant. The company’sentire A.D.I. Installation Division was recently moved to the Golden facility which led to the construction of a new 5,000 square foot machine shop building. The A.D.I. Division joins the Transportation Division and Fitting Fabrication Division in Golden, which was relocated from a Michigan Plant. A production line runs 24 hours a day seven days a week out of the facility. 81 employees are currently based out of the 95,000 square foot building.
- Word came in December that the decision to close 252 United States Postal Service mail processing facilities nationwide including the Quincy facility would be delayed until at least May of 2012. GREDF, City officials and Mayor Spring worked successfully with Illinois and Washington lawmakers, including Senator Dick Durbin, to save the facility back in 2010, but a U.S.P.S. deficit in 2011 has prompted the agency to again look at taking drastic measures. Closing the facility would eliminate next-day delivery within the region and 60 to 70 positions. GREDF continues to support efforts to keep the facility open.
- Harris Corporation won a 2011 Governor’s Sustainability Award for Continuous Improvement. They received the recognition for their ongoing commitment to environmental excellence through outstanding and innovative sustainability practices.
- Tim and Tamie Lung, owners of the Crawdad’s Classic brand of products out of Camp Point are poised for growth in 2012. The company has launched a national marketing campaign and hopes to eventually bring bottling operations to the Adams County area.
- An AT&T Cell Phone Outlet and Aspen Dental Office are now open at the corner of 52nd and Broadway in front of Walmart. GREDF assisted Quattro Development with the project and we were pleased to receive a letter addressed to Jim Mentesti from the developer stating, “Without question, the experience we’ve had working with you, your staff, and the Quincy municipal officials is the best we’ve encountered.” AT&T Illinois President Paul La Schiazza came to the store opening on December 8th.
- F&M Bank and Trust Company purchased the parcel east of Aspen Dental from Quattro Development. The Bank plans to start construction on a full service branch in 2012. GREDF assisted F&M in the selection of the site.
- T.F. Ehrhart Company is constructing a new building at 42nd and Koch’s Lane in the East Quincy Development District. The company has been supplying heating and air conditioning equipment to contractors throughout Western Illinois for over 55 years.
- Good Samaritan Home continues to move forward on its $20.7 million dollar multi-phase renovation. When completed all types of senior housing will be available, from independent cottages to full-time nursing care units.
- Activity in the Schneidman Industrial Park continued in 2011 with the addition of Tillitt Collision Repair and Moore’s Floors which expanded into a 15,000 square foot building in order to enhance its commercial flooring operations.
- Preliminary site work has been completed at the future home of the U.S. Army Reserves Center Training Facility. The facility will be located at 24th and Weiss Lane in the Northwood Business Park and site plans include a training building, vehicle maintenance shop and storage building.
- Farmers Bank of Liberty plans to establish a branch at 4134 Broadway in Quincy after purchasing the former restaurant building.
- J.M. Huber just completed an 18,000 square foot addition to its facilities in the South Quincy Development District. The expansion will house a production line for Huber’s food and pharmaceutical-grade of calcium carbonate. The product is currently being made in their California facility, but the economics made it more attractive to build in Quincy than expand in California.
- City officials are close to approving the site plan for a 50-unit, two-story, 64,000 square foot senior apartments complex at 48th and State.
- Bank of Springfield announced plans to move its Quincy branch from 18th and Broadway to 1111 Maine in downtown Quincy. The branch could open as early as late spring.
- Speaking of downtown Quincy, our partnership with the Historic Quincy Business District and executive director Travis Brown is as strong as ever. We are pleased to share that downtown Quincy’s occupancy rate is currently at 91 percent. Some of the 2011developments that contributed to this tremendous number include:
- The opening of the $27.2 million dollar Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center in September.
- The opening of First Bankers Trust Company’s 30,000 square foot, $5 million dollar banking facility at 12th and Broadway in May.
- The opening of the 48-unit, $9.2 million dollar Franklin Square Apartments complex at 3rd and State which company officials tell us quickly filled and remains at full occupancy.
- The opening of Cape Air’s ticket office at 727 Hampshire which is located in a block of beautifully rehabilitated and newly-leased buildings thanks to local developers, Austin Properties.
- And the opening of a number of high-end restaurants including The Maine Course, ONE Restaurant and Bar and Talayna’s.
We’re excited to see work nearing completion at 8th and Jersey thanks to Ameren Illinois’ site remediation program. As the $30 million dollar clean-up is completed we look forward to working with our H.Q.B.D. partners to find the right developer and project for the site.
2011 also saw the $5.5 million dollar renovation of the Quincy Public Library and Awerkamp Machine Company’s completion of a new warehouse at 716 Vermont in the downtown.
GREDF’s Entrepreneurship Specialist, Charles Bell had another busy year in 2011. He assisted over 70 businesses with startup and expansion planning, site location and financing. Charles helped Adams County businesses and entrepreneurs navigate a variety of financial incentive programs available to them, including the Rural Adams Development Corporation, Adams County Revolving Loan Fund, GREDF Central Business District Revolving Loan Fund, Adams Electric Revolving Loan Fund and Two Rivers Revolving Loan Fund. Specific examples of assistance include the expansion of Alliance Industrial Corporation on Highway 57 and the construction of a soybean treatment and warehousing facility owned by Chuck and Mary Beckman near Paloma.