The long-vacant Sud Building in downtown Pekin is set to have tenants again by year's end.
The Pekin City Council approved a loan of up to $200,000 in TIF money for the purchase of a new sprinkler system to bring the '70s-era three-story building up to current code.
The Sud family said that's the big obstacle keeping them from closing on a 10-year lease of the top floor with a client who promises to bring 70 well-paying jobs to the city.
"It's a big win for the city. It puts feet in the downtown area for lunch, breakfast, or whatever it is that might be coming in the future," said economic development manager Matt Fick. "It also preps the first and second floors for occupancy, as well. Without the sprinklers, they're just going to keep coming up against the same hurdles over and over again."
The Suds say there is already interest in the first floor from local businesses, as well.
Pekin Mayor Mark Luft said the long duration of the lease is a good sign.
"It was another building that we had concern of sitting empty, but now we know it'll be stabilized properly. It'll have tenants again. It'll have life again, which is what it was meant to have," he said.
The interested company wasn't disclosed at Monday's city council meeting.
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