U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $2.5M to Boost Business & Export Opportunities in Granite City, Illinois, Opportunity Zone

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross recently announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $2.5million grant to America’s Central Port District, formerly known as Tri-City Regional Port District, Granite City, Illinois, to make storage-based infrastructure improvements needed to increase the Port’s capacity to handle freight and boost export opportunities. The EDA grant, to be located in a Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Opportunity Zone, will be matched with $1.1 million in local funds and is expected to create or retain nearly 165 jobs and generate $3.5 million in private investment.

“The Trump Administration is committed to helping American businesses grow through exports,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “This project will enhance America’s Central Port District’s ability to handle more freight and boost economic opportunities, and the project’s location in an Opportunity Zone will drive additional public and private investment to the region.”

“America’s Central Port District has seen an increase in traffic since opening in 2016,” said Dana Gartzke, Performing the Delegated Duties of the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. “This EDA project will help the port build two new agriculture product storage bins and a conveyor system at an existing terminal facility to increase its export capacity. Its location in an Opportunity Zone will attract additional investment needed to diversify and further grow the region’s economy.”

“Every year, millions of tons of cargo are shipped along the Mississippi River, including through ports like America’s Central Port in Southern Illinois,” said Congressman Mike Bost (IL-12). “This critical investment builds upon previous grants to improve and strengthen their infrastructure to increase marine commerce even more. The result will be expanded operations and more jobs for the Metro East region, and reflects strong support for investment in the community through Opportunity Zones.” 

The funding announced today goes to one of Illinois’ 327 Opportunity Zones. Created by President Donald J. Trump’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017Opportunity Zones are spurring economic development in economically-distressed communities nationwide. In June 2019, EDA added Opportunity Zones as an Investment Priority, which increases the number of catalytic Opportunity Zone-related projects that EDA can fund to fuel greater public investment in these areas. To learn more about the Commerce Department’s work in Opportunity Zones, please visit EDA’s Opportunity Zones webpage. To learn more about the Opportunity Zone program, see the Opportunity Now resources webpage. To learn more about Opportunity Zone best practices, see the recently released White House Opportunity and Revitalization Council Report to President Trump.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation’s regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.

Feeler, S. Architects & HBD Construction Awarded New Medical Office Building in Quincy, Illinois


This 83,000 square-foot, two-story medical office building, with an emphasis on Orthopedics, includes Radiology, Laboratory, Clinical, and Physical Therapy departments, as well as public areas such as retail, coffee shop, and meeting spaces. The second floor houses Specialty Care Practitioners and additional space for future healthcare specialists.

FSA (Feeler, S. Architects) utilized a 25-degree site orientation and combined it with a 250-foot glazing and intentional overhangs to maximize the flow of natural light throughout the building.

By designing the building with four entrances, the facility provides expansive parking for its guests and staff without sacrificing customer convenience. Waiting areas line the interior length of the building, creating comfortable patient spaces with ample technology support (internet, power, etc.). Wayfinding is made simple for both patients and staff with each clinical POD designed in a circuit pattern, while a back-of-house corridor allows providers and employees to access and supply departments without interfering with patient-oriented spaces.

This building is currently under construction. 2017 Design Competition Team: FSA (Feeler, S. Architects), HBD Construction, SSC Engineering, DMI (Design Mechanical), and PSBA (Poepping, Stone, Bach & Associates).

The Korte Company Begins Work On 188,000 Square Foot Manufacturing Facility For Knapheide In Quincy, Illinois


Construction is scheduled to begin in March on a new 188,000 square manufacturing facility for The Knapheide Manufacturing Co. in Quincy, Illinois. The Korte Company was awarded the design-build contract earlier this year.

The new plant will be located directly south of the company’s existing 480,000-square-foot manufacturing facility, which was originally constructed by The Korte Company in 1995.

When completed in early 2018, the expansion is expected to create 250 new positions, including manufacturing, installation, and various support roles.

Headquartered in Quincy, Illinois, The Knapheide Manufacturing Company is a family-owned business established in 1848.  For six generations, Knapheide has provided customers with high-quality, work-ready transportation solutions.  More work vehicles on the road today carry the Knapheide name than any other manufacturer.

Knapheide partners and customers include truck and van distributors, commercial dealers, commercial fleets, fleet management companies, government entities, utilities, and end-users across a wide range of vocational segments.


The Korte Company To Begin Design-Build Project For BJC At Alton Memorial Hospital In Alton, Illinois


The Korte Company was awarded a 2-story, 42,166 square foot addition to the existing Medical Office Building ‘B’, located on the Alton Memorial Hospital campus in Alton, Illinois. The adjacent construction will occupy an existing parking lot, which will be removed. The anticipated construction is marked for early 2017 and is expected to be completed within the year.

The Korte Company, founded in 1958, is headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri with offices in Highland, Illinois; Norman, Oklahoma; and Las Vegas, Nevada. The company manages, on average, an excess of $250 million in annual construction volume.

The Korte Company’s project expertise includes building for federal, state and local government agencies as well as the design and construction of healthcare facilities, medical office buildings, warehouse/distribution centers, religious facilities, commercial buildings, schools, recreation centers and office complexes.


IMPACT Strategies Awarded Second Project at Peoria Retail Development

General contracting firm IMPACT Strategies has been awarded a second retail project in the Knoxville Crossing Development in Peoria, Illinois. Knoxville Crossing Retail Building, a 12,000 square foot strip center, is now under construction.

This past May, IMPACT Strategies began constructing the 70,000-square-foot Knoxville Crossing retail center, anchored by Schnucks Markets, Inc., and part of a larger mixed-use development being developed by The DESCO Group of St. Louis.  IMPACT Strategies is collaborating with BRR Architecture, Inc., of Merriam, Kansas and Zumwalt Engineering of Peoria on all design aspects of the project.

This retail building will include a drive thru and is expected to be completed in late Fall 2016.

IMPACT Strategies, Inc. specializes in Retail, Commercial, Medical, Senior Housing and Education construction and offers comprehensive construction services including design-build, general contracting, construction management and pre-construction management