New plans for the former Howard Johnson Hotel site in downtown Davenport

DAVENPORT-- There is a change in plans for the site in downtown Davenport where the old Howard Johnson Hotel once stood.

Contractors originally designed a seven story building for offices. But developers say that much space isn't really needed in Davenport.

"They're looking at retooling this project potentially to be more retail oriented, have maybe a residential component and a smaller footprint of offices," says Downtown Davenport Partnership Executive Director Kyle Carter.

City leaders say this site, in particular, is important because it's the first thing people see when the enter the downtown.

"It's a gateway to downtown, and it's also got some killer site lines of the river, roller dam, and the island, everything. It's a great spot," says Carter.

It's back to the drawing board for design, and back to square one for funding.

Contractors were able to secure thousands of dollars in grants from the state and city to build an office building, but no offices means no grants.

"The grants are all very specific, and so if you change the project, then you have to go through some fiery hoops to get them again or get a different variation of amounts," says Carter.

So for now, the important gateway will stay an empty lot. What it will become is still up in the air.

Carter expects to have final design plans within the next few months.