Update: City Council Approves 12 Million Dollars Ingersoll Bond

- Update: 11/24/2014: Rockford- There is a lot riding on the success of the Ingersoll building in downtown Rockford being turned into a sports complex. That’s why Rockford Aldermen voted to approve the $12.3 million dollars bond for the facility.

3rd Ward Alderman Tom McNamara says, "One [of the projects in development] is the Amerock, [and there's] the Gorman Hotel, which is a $50 million dollar project that will not go unless the Ingersoll project goes."

The Ingersoll Project will cost more than $22 million dollars to complete. McNamara says State and Federal grants will help cover an additional $10 million. The building’s location helped them secure the grants.  McNamara says "Building at this location, you've had a lot of people say, 'well why don't you build it on the far east side?' Well, actually, it will be cheaper for us to have it [at the Ingersoll location] because we will have more grant money available to us."

Rockford will have twenty years to pay back the loan. The Ingersoll sports complex is planned to be completed by summer of 2016.

ROCKFORD- The Ingersoll Building sits empty downtown Rockford. City leaders hope to turn it into the area's premier indoor sports complex.

"The Economic Development Council is really supportive of the idea. This is one really good, innovative way of creating more wealth while we gain a position in sports tourism that we've traditionally had," said Rockford Area Economic Development Council Vice President of Development Mark Podemski.

It’s why City Council is moving grant money for Davis Festival Park improvements towards the new $21 million dollar Ingersoll budget which includes parking.

City Council plans to reallocate $501,167 dollars from the Rivers Edge Grant Fund to the Ingersoll Project.

"It's on par right now I think our number one goal is that we need to make a state of the art facility. We need to have the parking available to us and we need to have access,” said Rockford Third Ward Alderman Tom McNamara.

But why pump money into Ingersoll when District 205 is building brand new field houses with tax payer dollars?

"None of the field houses will have 16 volley ball courts none of the field houses will have 8 basketball courts and to attract the tournaments that we're trying to attract here in Rockford we need to have those," said Alderman McNamara. 

Tournaments and sports tourism that Podemski believes will create job growth and wealth creation here in the Forest City.

The next item Council will pass is the authority for administration to go forward with securing the bonds needed to fund Ingersoll. That should happen within two to four weeks. 

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