Committee speaks on future of Downtown Carbondale - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Committee speaks on future of Downtown Carbondale

Carbondale residents pack the civic center to voice their opinions about the new development. (Source: Giacomo Luca, KFVS) Carbondale residents pack the civic center to voice their opinions about the new development. (Source: Giacomo Luca, KFVS)
An image of the TIF zones. (Source: City of Carbondale) An image of the TIF zones. (Source: City of Carbondale)
Members of the development committee release their ideas for the new downtown development. (Source: Giaccomo Luca, KFVS) Members of the development committee release their ideas for the new downtown development. (Source: Giaccomo Luca, KFVS)
Consturction has already begun at the former 710 shopping center in Carbondale. (Source: Giacomo Luca, KFVS) Consturction has already begun at the former 710 shopping center in Carbondale. (Source: Giacomo Luca, KFVS)
CARBONDALE, IL (KFVS) - The City of Carbondale made its first public strides on Wednesday to discuss the future of its downtown area.

A 17-member "Downtown Master Plan Advisory Committee" met at the Carbondale Civic Center to release a public mission statement for future downtown development plans.

Construction has already begun at the former site of the 710 shopping center. When complete, it will be home to student housing as well as commercial shopping stores.

The committee chair Jack Langowski said he'd like to see Carbondale become more connected.

"We hope that we can create connectivity between the university and the hospital so that there's a nice symbiotic flow from both of those ends into the downtown area," Langowski said.

According to Langowski, the creation of a master development plan is all in an effort to attract more students, tourists, and to create more shopping for residents.

Langowski said that with a new facelift, the city will accomplish that goal.

The city will redevelop its tax increment funding (TIF) zone. There are two districts like such that are in the downtown area. Those zones lie between Southern Illinois University Campus and just north of Memorial Hospital.

TIF zones offer special financing and subsidies to businesses that are in those zones. These zones are created to attract businesses to downtown areas.

The committee members nominated and voted Meghan Cole to the vice chair position and Maria Burkowski to the secretary position.

The committee plans to select and hire a consultant by the end of December 2014 to oversee the project.

Several more public meetings will be held through December to discuss the project.

No budget amount has been requested or approved at this time.

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