economic development

Tim Shelley / WCBU

Developer Casey Baldovin is announcing a new project in the Warehouse District. 

Tim Shelley / WCBU

The Peoria Innovation Hub formally kicked off Monday in downtown Peoria. 

Tim Shelley / WCBU

A nine-block stretch of downtown Peoria is now the Innovation District.

Pop-A-Shot Loan Approved by Peoria Council

May 15, 2019

The Peoria City Council last night took a step to bring a new company to town.

Peoria City Council Reviews Economic Development Tool

Jan 28, 2019

The city of Peoria has many economic development tools for attracting business.

Greater Peoria EDC

The Greater Peoria Economic Development Council will have a new executive director at the helm in the new year.

DeKalb and Rochelle may be in the running for a massive new auto manufacturing plant. Toyota and Mazda announced they are teaming up to build a one-and-a-half billion dollar factory in the U.S., but didn’t specify the site.

State Representative Tom Demmer says he knows state and local economic development officials are working on a code-named project that meets the same specifications of the Toyota/Mazda plan. Demmer says he’s not surprised DeKalb and Rochelle are contenders:

The City of Peoria is continuing its Community Conversation on Race and Economic Opportunity.


The next phase of the effort is smaller subject based group discussions, including asset development, justice, education and health. The workgroup meetings are an outgrowth of two large community conversations.


The small group meetings are scheduled between Monday and Wednesday next week in the evening at Valeska Hinton School and the Lincoln Branch Public Library.


Western Illinois University wants to do more to help the Quad Cities area create new  businesses and expand existing companies. In January, the university opened its second Small Business Development Center on its riverfront campus in Moline. WIU also opened a new, International Trade Center.

Peoria Considers the Economics of Its Land Use

Dec 12, 2016
Strong Towns / You Tube

A private consultant is offering a different look at economic development and land use in Peoria.

The privately run and funded economic development corporation that Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner created to attract new businesses to Illinois has a new name.

The Illinois Business and Economic Development Corporation announced Monday that it will now be known as Intersect Illinois. Rauner used his executive powers in February to establish the nonprofit. Democrats raised questions about transparency and a few weeks later formed a bipartisan committee to review the corporation.

Melissa Wall / Flickr/Creative Commons

Mid-size American cities like Peoria face some of the nation’s deepest challenges with poverty, health and a lack of investment. 

A new initiative hopes to tackle some of those problems, thanks to a grant from the Reinvestment Fund and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

The “Invest Health” initiative was established to launch projects focused on urban revitalization, healthier food options, school attendance, and economic opportunities, the Peoria City/County Health Department said in a news release.

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner's administration is defending the transparency of its newly formed Illinois Business and Economic Development Corporation. The not-for-profit will advise the state's economic development agency.  One of Rauner's lawyers, Georgia Mann, says its bylaws make clear it will respond to open records requests. 

Illinois has more units of government than any other state and the second highest property taxes. That's just part of the problem, according to Governor Bruce Rauner, who told members of the Quad Cities Chamber of Commerce that Illinois should "aim for average." 

GotCredit / Flickr/Creative Commons

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - The city of Springfield's new micro-lending program has given out a total of $120,000 in loans to small business owners and entrepreneurs in its first two months.

The micro-lending program started in mid-September. According to the city, about 40 people have applied for loans, and 22 have been approved.

Illinois’ budget impasse is getting the attention of more and more students at Northern Illinois University.  Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner visits DeKalb tonight to speak to members of the County’s Economic Development Corporation.

Casino towns outside Chicago are feeling the sting of a lack of a state budget because they're not receiving their share of gambling tax revenues.

More than 5,200 students from China attend the University of Illinois campus in Champaign-Urbana and local businesses are taking notice.

Gov. Bruce Rauner's administration is approving $100 million in business tax incentives while suspending more than $200 million in grants for social services and parks. 

ELM set for loan from Peoria County

Oct 24, 2014

Peoria County is poised to loan an environmental tech company $2.5 million to expand its footprint. ELM, LLC has more than 800 employees in 16 states.  It also makes air treatment systems for plants and builds large containers to ship natural gas.  Lee Graves is the CEO of ELM.  He says Peoria County’s loan will also help the company add to its workforce in addition to helping fund its product line:

The City of Peoria is getting federal funding to recruit or re-hire six police officers. U.S. Senator Dick Durbin and Congresswoman Cheri Bustos announced the $750,000 in funding. It’s part of the Community Oriented Policing Services, or COPS, program.  

Brian Mackey / IPR

Earlier this year, legislation was introduced to abolish the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. Administration officials negotiated a more modest set of changes, and now they've beensigned into law. IPR's Brian Mackey has more on the changes in store for economic development in Illinois.

Illinois Ethanol Plant Celebrates Anniversary

Aug 21, 2013
Herb Trix / IPR

Millions of bushels of corn from northwestern Illinois have been turned into billions of dollars, thanks to an ethanol plant near Annawan in Henry County. Patriot Renewable Fuels will celebrate its 5 year anniversary with an open house and tours Thursday and Friday. IPR's Herb Trix reports.

Discussion on improving the regional economy

Aug 20, 2013

Peoria area representatives of education, big and small businesses, healthcare, and manufacturing came together to discuss how to improve the regional economy. 17th District Congresswoman Cheri Bustos is holding three such meetings across her district. She says the goal is to form a vision for economic success and come up with issues important for economic development.

The region's new economic development effort unveiled its five-year strategy.  Peoria Public Radio's Alex Rusciano reports it’s been a year since Focus Forward C.I. started goal setting: 

The region’s new economic development effort plans to unveil steps towards meeting its five-year goals at the end of the month. But Focus Forward C.I. continues to deal with calls for more transparency in its meeting process. The policy steering committee met Tuesday without taking any action on a five-year budget or voting to make the group separate from the Tri-County Regional Planning Commission. Tri-County board chair Larry Whitaker says that’s because the meeting wasn’t properly noticed:

The Woodford County Board is evaluating its economic development options for next year. The County could use existing staff for the job, or create a new part-time position for about $50,000. Mike Hinrichsen, chairs the Woodford County finance committee. He says the County needs a separate economic development effort:

Members of the Tri-County Regional Planning Commission are still voicing concerns about transparency involving the region’s new economic development effort.  Peoria Public Radio’s Alex Rusciano reports: 

New name, structure for Heartland Partnership

Jun 3, 2013

The Heartland Partnership now has a new name and structure. The group of organizations that used to function in the Partnership have been reduced, refocused, and in at least one case, completely disbanded. The Peoria Area Chamber of Commerce and the CEO Council are the two private businesses remaining under the newly-named Greater Peoria Business Alliance.

Economic development bill approved

May 31, 2013

The Illinois House approved a massive economic development bill Thursday evening. The legislation makes way for projects across Illinois from a fertilizer plant in Tuscola to remodeling the convention center in Rosemont. It also has what Governor Pat Quinn calls a "breakthrough" meant to advance the proposed third Chicago airport near Peotone.