Hill & Valley Premium Bakery has 30 days to determine its next step after its building was sold Monday to make way for construction of a Walmart Supercenter on 11th Street in Rock Island.
Doug Davidson, president and chief executive officer of Hill & Valley, said the baking company is studying its options. Hill & Valley is located in the former Zayre department store at Watch Tower Plaza.
Rock Island aldermen approved a $1.5 million agreement Monday night to buy the bakery building from owners Nancy and George Coin. The Coins lease it to Hill & Valley.
In all, the council has approved spending $6.3 million to buy the properties at Watch Tower and demolish them. Price Properties LLC, a development company working with Walmart, will pay $4.5 million to the city for the Watch Tower Plaza property and adjacent land.
Jeff Eder, the city’s economic development director, said Hill & Valley has a first right of refusal to buy its building from the city.
“We have options and we have 30 days to say what our intentions are, and we probably will use 30 days,” Davidson said Tuesday. “We would have to move all of our manufacturing equipment. Our process would be to build, but that is a long process and it would be a $4 million to $4.5 million project.”
Eder said the city is assisting tenants, such as Black Hawk College’s Adults Learning Center, that will be displaced by the project. Eder said the city is “essentially buying the new building for Black Hawk.”
The adult learning center will move into a new building on a city-owned 7.5-acre site near the City Limits Saloon and Grill, located west of 9th Street a few blocks south of Watch Tower. Also relocating to that location is Christine Elsberg State Farm Insurance office.
Eder said the current layout has seven buildings being constructed on the site. He said a third tenant has agreed to move there, but he declined to name the business.
City Manager Thomas Thomas has said Walmart will bring in about $1.4 million in sales tax revenue and about $300,000 in property taxes per year. Over a 20-year period, he said that would be about $34 million in what he called a conservative estimate.