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Local

Storage business, new nursing home want a piece of enterprise zone

Dixon, Rochelle expansion projects would take up about 23 acres of land

DIXON – Two development projects in Dixon and Rochelle are looking to land business incentives by coming into the Lee-Ogle enterprise zone.

Anchor Road Storage, 823 Anchor Road, plans to expand its storage unit footprint, and Liberty Village is building a $17.6 million nursing, rehabilitation and assisted living facility in Rochelle off of Flagg Road.

Andy Shaw, zone administrator and GIS specialist for Blackhawk Hills Regional Council, told the County Board on Tuesday that Anchor Road Storage has four buildings on the site and has room to add another four.

Adding the storage company to the zone would take up about 4 acres, and the nursing home, which would include a specialized memory care facility for residents with Alzheimer’s and related disorders, would be around 19 acres.

If approved, there will still be more than 700 reserve acres for adding more projects into the zone.

The change was introduced to the board Tuesday and will be voted on next month.

The board also approved adding Mount Morris into the zone.

Amboy and Mount Morris are moving along with being added to the list of partnering governments in the zone, which consists of Dixon, Rochelle, and Lee and Ogle counties, and getting zone coverage to attract new developments or expansions.

Amboy wants to include 74 acres, and Mount Morris wants nearly 200, including about 100 acres of undeveloped land southeast of the village as well as the downtown and the former Quad Graphics printing plant, which shut down operations in 2011 after 113 years in business.

Shaw said he anticipates Amboy to be officially added to the zone in a matter of days, and the application to add Mount Morris will likely take 2 or 3 months.

Enterprise zones serve as economic development tools that use incentives like sales tax exemptions for building materials or a 50 percent property tax abatement for 6 years to encourage new businesses to open,or existing ones to expand.

The zone went into effect a year ago, it mostly covers Dixon and Rochelle, and it has a capacity of 15 square miles.

NEXT MEETING

The Lee County Board next meets at 9 a.m. March 21 in the third-floor board room of the Old Lee County Courthouse, 112 E. Second St.

The agenda will be posted at leecountyil.com 2 days before the meeting.

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