Former Rockford watch factory, Trekk building up for sale
ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - What once was old is new again, a vote by the Rockford City Council finance and personnel committee paves the way for the transformation of two historic buildings with nearly 250 combined years of Rockford history.
Plans for the city of Rockford to sell the old watch factory and the Trekk building now advance to full council after it passes unanimously Monday night. While the actual sale is not final, council member Kevin Frost says plans are underway.
“We’re entering into a contract to sell the building with the anticipation that the developer will move forward, I think he has approximately one year and the plan is to convert both of these buildings into more apartments for downtown Rockford,” said Frost.
Those apartments will be developed by Oliver Emerson and his development team. Emerson and his son, Oliver Emerson Jr., have plans for the old watch factory and Trekk building, which have been in the possession of the city of Rockford for decades.
“It’s just an exciting thing for Rockford right now... and we just want to be a part of it,” said Emerson. “He says ‘Dad we can do this’. He talked me into it and I’m on full board with it.”
If passed by the full council, the city will sell the watch factory for $55,000 and the Trekk building for $70,000.
The redevelopment will cost Oliver Emerson approximately $13 million.
The city will help support the project financially with $1.2 million.
Current plans for the old watch factory call for 23 market-rate apartments, which will cost almost $7,500,000. If apartments sell well, Emerson says 30 more apartments could be built on the property.
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