Revitalizing Project Heads to Rock Island City Council

A project three years in the making will finally be presented to city council next week. The project is designed to revitalize the College Hill district in Rock Island. Despite facing some opposition, organizers for the project hope it will get the city’s stamp of approval.

It was business as usual for Cool Beans Coffeehouse in Rock Island.

“It’s one of the reasons that I put cool beans here was because I saw the potential being right next to the college and being in this neighborhood community,” says Annette Zapolis, owner of Cool Beans.

A project she has been working on will put not only her business, but others, on the map. Annette is also chairman for the College Hill organization, who has teamed up with Augustana College and the City of Rock Island to make College Hill more attractive.

“It’s meant to be an outline and a roadmap for the many directions we can take in the future,” says Annette.

A future that Annette says might not happen, because some are worried about cost, “There’s a lot of things in here we’ve discussed as throughout this three year planning process that the organization  isn’t jumping to get done right away.”

She says the organization will also look at funding outside of the city.

“I just like the whole area the whole mom and pop shop feel,” is why Rich Nunez open his business in college hill.

Rich’s business, Against the Grain, and Fabulous Finds are just two of the new stores to pop up in College Hill.

“Boy we’ve gained a lot of customers from being here,” says owner of Fabulous Finds, Barb McKay.

Although business has been good, Rich and Barb say the area could use some help.

“There could be some things done that would help you know bring a little bit more attraction to the place,” says Rich.

“I think it could use some updating; some make it look more inviting,” says Barb.

Every item in the project will have to be individually proposed and presented to the city council for approval. The public hearing will take place Tuesday, April 2, 2013.

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