Future for Local Business Owners

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Updated: Thu, 17 Apr 2014 07:03:06 CST

This historic landmark has been vacant for years when plans to make it a luxury hotel fell through.

Now, it's known as Tower 217 and could soon be the anchor of a renovated downtown.

Chad Nabity– "There is a lot of demand for downtown housing and the people who have upper story downtown housing have no issue getting it rented out," says Chad Nabity, Planning Director for the Hall County Regional Planning Commission.

"Without someone taking on the redevelopment of that building you end up with a large vacant building in downtown Grand Island," says Chad Nabity.

Chad Nabbity with the community redevelopment authority says plans are in place for the first two floors to be renovated. They'll be used for commercial and residential business. A new boutique is also set to open.

This project will get some help to get off the ground in the form of tax increment funding.

"TIF is a real estate development tool that's often used to allow the city to forgo some of the real estate taxes that they would receive to finance development that wouldn't occur if not for this particular program," says Bob Sivick, Grand Island City Attorney.

The building has seen it's fair share of failed projects. Residents and city leaders hope this final attempt will revitalize downtown.