Economic Development | WGLT

Economic Development

West Bloomington Revitalization Project
Facebook / WBRP

The West Bloomington Revitalization Project wants to build the economy with teeny tiny loans.

Cars on Veterans Parkway
Ralph Weisheit / WGLT

The outlook is not good for the nation's cities if current trends continue.

Normal City Hall
Staff / WGLT

The head of the McLean County Chamber of Commerce said he disagrees with Normal Town Council member Stan Nord's view that "business and government should not be doing things together."

Now hiring sign
Charles Krupa / AP

Bloomington Normal's unemployment rate dropped a full point from November of last year, down to 3.1%. But the Illinois Department of Employment Security also reports the size of the workforce was unchanged over the 12-month period at 93,500.

State estimates indicate 3,000 people were out of work and looking for a job in November 2019. That’s lower than for most months of the year.

man at podium speaking.
Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

The Chinese consul general in Chicago said talks to end the trade war are at a critical point. During a speech at Illinois State University, Zhao Jian said the world's two largest economies are interdependent.

big room with seated people and display screens.
Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

The new head of the Bloomington-Normal Economic Development Council promised regular updates on development efforts during a joint Bloomington City Council, Normal Town Council, and McLean County Board meeting Monday night.

The vice president of the Bloomington-Normal Economic Development Council said a change in data surveyed is a step in the right direction to better recruiting new businesses to the community.

While the Peoria area is showing job growth, it still lags national averages.

Rivian Amazon van
Business Wire

The retail giant Amazon announced Thursday it plans to buy 100,000 electric delivery vehicles from Rivian as part of a larger effort to reduce its carbon footprint.

State Farm downtown
Eric Stock / WGLT

The Historic Preservation Commission had been set to hold hearings on two historic landmark nominations for the downtown building State Farm is offloading.

But Mayor Tari Renner said those won’t be needed.

architects rendering of the Trail East five story building
Town of Normal

Construction is scheduled to begin this fall on the $30 million mixed-use building that will rise on the northeast arc of Uptown circle. It is known as Trail East.

PGAV Planners

An analysis of the tax increment financing (TIF) district in Uptown Normal indicates the effort to spark development in the city center begun in 1999 has been a good value for taxpayers, according to a consultant.

Council members sit at a dais.
Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

The Normal Town Council has approved a development agreement with an Uptown business to create a two-story brewpub and rooftop dining establishment using the old Bill's Key and Lock shop property.

EDC President Sets Sights On Suburban Businesses

Aug 22, 2019
Patrick Hoban
WGLT file photo

The Bloomington-Normal Economic Development Council’s new CEO says his first plan of action is to work on business retention and expansion.

International Documentary on Climate Change Educates B-N

Jul 3, 2019
istart2.blogspot.com

Internationally-known documentary maker and environmentalist Renee Scheltema said "Normal is Over."

Chris Koos at a meeting
Staff / WGLT

The mayor of Normal said regional efforts to pull together on economic development have never really happened.

Keith greets candidates
Amy Niebur / WGLT

Two candidates for a seat on the Heartland Community College Board both said they want to be careful to keep property taxes as low as possible, as did a third who is running uncontested.

Candidates at a table
Jeff Smudde / WGLT

Empty buildings. Aging infrastructure. An arena losing money. What can the city do to revitalize Downtown Bloomington?

Candidates for city council took on the question at a GLT and League of Women Voters forum Tuesday night.

Melissa Hon
Breanna Grow / WGLT

Alderman Diana Hauman says in her time on the Bloomington City Council, she hasn’t been satisfied with the progress the city or its partners have made on economic development.

Candidates at a table
Amy Niebur / WGLT

When it comes to financial incentives for developers, candidates for Normal Town Council say who receives incentives is just as important as how much they receive.

Kim Bray at a meeting
Ryan Denham / WGLT

Bloomington will keep its moratorium on video gambling until after state legislators have made key decisions about sports betting and marijuana.

Tim Gleason
Amy Niebur / WGLT

Bloomington plans to spend $200,000 less on funding for the Bloomington-Normal Area Convention and Visitors Bureau and BN Advantage next year.

City Hall
Staff / WGLT

The City of Bloomington has suspended its business registration program.

Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

The Bloomington Planning Commission on Wednesday passed concerns to the city council over housing density in areas just outside downtown.

Kroger
Staff / WGLT

Grocery chain Kroger has another year to complete infrastructure improvements at the Bloomington site where it had previously planned to build a $25.4 million store.

Pool entrance
Ryan Denham / WGLT

The Bloomington City Council adopted a new parks and recreation plan Monday night that could inform the city’s budget priorities for 2020 and beyond.

Tari Renner
Breanna Grow / WGLT

Cutting back may have helped Bloomington balance its budget, but Mayor Tari Renner says it’s going to take more than budget cuts to help grow the local economy.

architects rendering of the Trail East five story building
Town of Normal

The mayor of Normal said Tuesday that increased town incentives for the Trail East project in Uptown are worth the money.

Architect presents at a meeting
Breanna Grow / WGLT

Officials in Normal defended the Trail East project against public criticism Monday night, with the council unanimously approving two measures to keep the project moving forward.

State Farm HQ building
Ralph Weisheit / WGLT

In spite of community worries over the number and average pay of State Farm employees in Bloomington-Normal, the company said the number of jobs is closing the year steady.

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