Rockford Mayor Larry Morrissey will return to China in an attempt to secure more investors in the proposed Amerock building hotel complex downtown.
Developer Gorman and Company says there is reason to believe this trip will be the most successful yet, building on previous trips the mayor and Gorman CEO Gary Gorman have made in the past, the most recent being in March.
Gorman says the pair will attend nearly twenty individual investor meetings as well as presenting the project at a promotional seminar in Shanghai before 60-to-70 attendees. They will also travel to the Chinese city of Shenzhen.
Gorman also announced a new name for the project, ‘Chicago-Rockford CityHub’, which the company describes in news release as “an integrated redevelopment project on the Rock River in the heart of downtown Rockford. CityHub brings a new level of business, sports, and entertainment into the downtown urban core. The project includes an Embassy Suites by Hilton hotel with 160 rooms and conference center, the newly opened UW Health SportsFactory indoor sports center, a newly-designed Davis Riverside Park and event space, parking, and road and infrastructure improvements.”
While the indoor sports center is completed and was opened earlier this year, getting EB-5 investor funding for the hotel project has proven to be more challenging. EB-5 visas are granted to investors who pay a minimum of $500,000 for a project which creates jobs in economically distressed areas like downtown Rockford, and have been popular with wealthy Chinese individuals seeking green cards in the United States.
In an ‘Eyewitness News’ special report ‘Answers on Amerock’, CEO Gary Gorman conceded the project is behind schedule and there is no timetable for completion, but added his company has made a significant investment in the project and is committed to seeing it through.
You can see the special report here.