Marina complex proposed for Morris
By Sarwat S. Ahmad Correspondent February 11, 2013 10:04AM
Updated: March 14, 2013 6:17AM
A long-planned marina resort community in Morris is on its way to being realized.
Aldermen last week approved Edgewater Resources’ preliminary plan for Morris Riverplace II as well as a number of other items connected with the $80 million project.
The plans for the new marina community, which will be located on 168 acres along Cemetery Road and the Illinois River, also required annexation of part of the property by Morris. One of Edgewater’s partners, Ron Schults, presented the plans for the marina in a public hearing prior to the city council meeting.
Edgewater intends to develop 207 residential units, a 208 wet-slip marina, 297 rack storage slips, a restaurant, marina-related shops, a 70-room hotel with banquet halls for weddings and business conferences, a clubhouse and a fleeting/docking operation on the property.
It also plans to build a private water ski community with 25 single-family homes on another 200 acres to the east of the marina, which includes property now owned by the American River Transportation Co, a subsidiary of ADM Logistics, which uses that property for fleeting activities along the river.
The total project covers almost 400 acres.
The company had presented a larger community plan — with more than 400 residential units — to the city council in 2006 but then abandoned the project in light of the declining real estate market at that time. According to Schults, unlike the single-family home industry, “the marina and boating industry is still doing well.”
Edgewater has scaled down the project, included a hotel and restaurant and also aligned itself with ADM, which is invested in creating a water basin and a docking facility for its fleeting operations.
According to Schults, the project is expected to create at least 300 direct and indirect jobs.
The added docking facilities will also be a benefit to the city as more manufacturing and industrial companies interested in building in Morris have asked if there is a docking facility for transportation up the river, said Nancy Ammer, CEO of the Grundy County Economic Development Council.