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Von Maur Looks at Expansion

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DAVENPORT - The city council ran right through the Von Maur expansion project at its Committee of the Whole meeting Wednesday night.

Von Maur is interested in a tax break that would help it build a $15.5 million expansion project at its headquarters on Veterans Memorial Parkway. Crews have already started construction there, but Davenport's City Council vote could help Von Maur save some money.

"This facility has only been in operation for a year now," President Jim Von Maur said a month ago. "We're already looking to increase the size by two-thirds."

Von Maur has been headquartered in Davenport since 1872. Its headquarters used to be in downtown Davenport. Now though, it's in north Davenport.

"We're kind of the main department store here in Davenport," Von Maur said.

Von Maur is supposed to add 10 new full-time employees at its new site. According to the city, 315 employees already work at the complex.

"We'd be giving them the same type of tax exemptions that we would for other businesses that would be using the major thoroughfares," Alderman Barney Barnhill said.

Von Maur already has 27 department stores across the country. It's looking to add four more in Alabama, Wisconsin, New York, and even Iowa.

"Our goal is to add about one or two stores a year," Von Maur said. "We'd like to have steady growth."

Davenport's city council will vote on the tax exemptions at its meeting next Wednesday. Barnhill expects there to be no problem with the city passing this next week.