Skateboard Park, Restaurants, Apartments, Offices: All Could Be Part of Moline's I-74 Redevelopment
The former mayor of Pittsburgh says Moline "has the great river of America running through your city," and you should take advantage of it.
This week, Tom Murphy and two others from the Urban Land Institute are visiting Moline. They toured the land and property surrounding the new I-74 bridge, and met with representatives from the city and Renew Moline.
Rick Dishnica from the institute says before the city bought the old Kone tower and building along Sylvan Slough, it was an obstacle to development. But now it's a huge asset.
"We got out of the bus and Bob [Vitas] says, 'That's bald eagle up there.' And next thing you know, you hear the geese going, 'Quack, quack, quack,' and they all of a sudden see the bald eagle. Where can you do that in a city? Where you can see nature, right, literally there. I mean that has so much more potential than what normal opportunities are. I mean, we talk about a [Sylvan] slough. Well yeah, it's not part of the Mississippi. But it's a very nice calm part of that river. That gives you different opportunities."
Former Pittsburgh Mayor Tom Murphy says Moline can now distill all the ideas and challenges from the institute's 2021 report. There's plenty of land and the Spiegel building to consider.
"We recommended a skateboard park. I see little ridges on the steps downtown. And here it says, 'We don't want you here.' It's there for skateboarders. Now, what you're going to say [is], 'We want you and we're going to build this spectacular skateboard park under the highway.'"
The Urban Land Institute report is available on Renew Moline's website. The members of the group will continue to work with city staff and Renew Moline on Thursday.
The city received 18 letters of interest after publicizing its need for help developing a master plan for the I-74 redevelopment area. The next steps will include getting more feedback from the public, and selecting consultants, or a team of firms, to help Moline decide how to proceed.