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October 3, 2011


Greetings ~ 


The past couple of weeks delivered a range of positive coverage about key milestones and awards for a variety of Leadership Council clients. The spotlight also was on I-255 and its positive impact on the Metro East. There's no question the continued development of this key infrastructure project in our region has sparked major capital investments all along the I-255 corridor, including at Gateway Commerce Center, where new tenant leases have kept our vacancy rates for industrial space the lowest in the St. Louis region.


To learn more, check out the article links below and remember to pass along the good news that's occurring our region.




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America's Central Port wins award (St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 9/24/11)


America's Central Port recently received an Award for Excellence in Economic Development from the International Economic Development Council. Honored in the category of Real Estate Development and Reuse for communities with populations of 25,000 to 200,000, the Port received the award for its successful conversion of the former Charles Melvin Price Army Support Center into an economic engine for the region. The International Economic Development Council recognizes the world's best economic development programs and partnerships, marketing materials and the year's most influential leaders. (Read More)


Southwestern Illinois boasts lowest vacancy rates in metro industrial market (Illinois Business Journal, September 2011)


Southwestern Illinois' vacancy rate for industrial space dropped to only 5.5 percent with Walgreens' lease signing for 500,000 square feet in Gateway Commerce Center this summer. The Metro East's vacancy rate is the lowest in the metro St. Louis market, according to CB Richard Ellis' (CBRE)Second Quarter 2011 MarketView Report. The Metro East's rate is about three or four percent lower than the rest of the market, something representatives with CBRE's St. Louis office attribute to Gateway's continued success in atracting large businesses like Walgreens to Southwestern Illinois.

 (Read More)



Accounting for growth: SIUE, SLU enrollment up (St. Louis Business Journal, 9/30/11)


Student enrollment in accounting and law programs is steady or rising despite tough economic times, according to an article in this week's edition of the St. Louis Business Journal. Our own Southern Illinois University Edwardsville continues to experience impressive growth in its undergraduate accounting program, posting a 25-percent increase in enrollment over the past five years. (Read More) 



Illinois 255 transforming the landscape of Southwestern Illinois (Illinois Business Journal, September 2011)


The September issue of the Illinois Business Journal features a four-page special section highlighting the positive impact of Illinois 255 on our region. The development and extension of I-255 has been a longtime priority of the Leadership Council because of its potential to attract additional growth and investment to our region. The special section highlights how it's doing just that and the role that several Leadership Council members have had in making this important infrastructure project a reality. To read all the related stories, please visit:


SWIC gets federal grant to improve technical training (Belleville News-Democrat, 9/30/11)


Southwestern Illinois College (SWIC) recently received a $19.4 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor as part of the Illinois Green Economy Network. SWIC plans to use the grant money to help better prepare the workforce of tomorrow by expanding current programming in technical education, including industrial maintenance mechanics, advanced welding manufacturing and precision machining technology, according to SWIC President Georgia Costello. (Read More)


Granite High gym to get $2 million in fixes (Granite City Press Record, 10/3/11)


Using funds received from federal stimulus dollars, the Granite City School District plans to spend $2 million to upgrade Granite City High's gym lobby and surrounding areas, according to a recent Granite City Press Record article. The renovations include expanding the lobby by 30 feet and constructing new hallways that will connect the locker rooms and the gym. Construction will begin this month with work scheduled to be completed in April.  (Read More)


Contact Information

Patrick McKeehan

Executive Director

Leadership Council Southwestern Illinois



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