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Water spout, zip line, affordable townhouses, oh my: Developers weigh in on possible Moline Revitalization

Once the old I-74 bridge is gone, 13 acres will free up downtown Moline. Developers say it's important to seize the opportunity for growth.

MOLINE, Ill. — Construction on the new Interstate 74 Bridge is moving along, with the second arch set to be completed in days. Phase two, which includes the demolition of the existing I-74 Bridge is set to start in 2022. Once the old bridge is gone, 13 acres will free up downtown Moline and developers say it's important to seize the opportunity for growth.

A National Group of development experts called the Urban Land Institute presented its plan virtually Wednesday, to the city and the public.

Some of the ideas focused on making downtown Moline a destination for both tourists and locals. Ideas included a zipline that would go over the river, a skate park, and a 400-foot-tall waterspout that could be seen by drivers on the new I-74 river bridge.

It also includes more residential planning such as affordable townhomes, nature and bike trails, and space dedicated to artists, retail, and restaurants. With all the ideas, the group does recommend starting with specific few areas. That includes focusing on redeveloping the Spiegel Building, new housing developments, and a partnership to form a "Great River Park".

The City of Moline is currently searching for a new City Administrator and a new Economic Development Director, who would play crucial roles in implementing these ideas.