Demolition was expected to begin by the end of July 2014 to make way for a new Walmart in Rock Island.
The Rock Island City Council voted in November 2012 to buy ten properties, in and around Watch Tower Plaza, to make room for revitalization on 11th Street that will include a Walmart. Initial plans optimistically pointed to a 2013 opening for many of the new businesses there, but property acquisition and creation of a TIF district for the area have contributed to delays that made development of the area unlikely in 2014.
A chain link fence was up and visible around the former stores the week after the Independence Day Holiday.
Asbestos removal was underway according to Rock Island Assistant City Manager Jeff Eder. That was expected to take a couple of weeks, and then Valley Construction would begin actual demolition of the buildings at Watch Tower Plaza.
“(We) don’t have an exact date at this time,” Eder said July 9, 2014, “but it will be by the end of the month.”