New Wave of Growth Heading Our Way in Northern Winnebago County

By: Brad Broders
By: Brad Broders

Look around. In Northern Winnebago County, new growth seems to be popping up everywhere. But will the birth of so many stores and homes mean the death for these quiet, peaceful, tight-knit communities?

"Certainly the intent is to maintain the small-town atmosphere and look out for small businesses," Roscoe's Economic Development David Noel said.

"Downtown Rockton is cute. It's quaint. It's what we're all about. Yeah, I think we can do that," Rockton's Chamber Of Commerce Carol Lamb said.

Rockton's chamber of commerce boss expects more than 20 new village businesses to open up shop later this year. That'll include a condo and park project, lining the Rock River, and strengthening its downtown. But these changes are not without casualties. At least two long time businesses are calling it quits.
"With the park being done and the new development here, the Granary and the restaurant when it's done, I think it's going to add an aesthetically pleasing element to our community," Lamb said.

Just down the road in village of Roscoe, the recent trend is homes, homes and more homes. Three projects totaling about 100 new houses are in the final planning stages, in a community that's added 2500 residents since 2000.

"There's a lot happening. Obviously the residential market is continuing strong," Noel said.

Open land is also being gobbled up in South Beloit. Next month, the city clerk says leaders will decide on annexing land on the city's west end, that would open the door to at least 500 new homes, proving Northern Winnebago County's explosive growth won't be finished anytime soon.

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