As published in Register-Mail

GALESBURG — The owners of the former Maytag site in Galesburg are working their way through improving and leasing the property.

Wednesday, The Register-Mail reported on ongoing development efforts at 1000 South Linwood and 1801 Monmouth Boulevard, but had not yet received comments from Milwaukee-based Phoenix Investments, who purchased the former Maytag plant sites in 2019 to rehabilitate and lease.

Now, Phoenix Investments has confirmed that the 1801 Monmouth Boulevard site is the subject of “late stage lease negotiations” with a “high quality company” that would anchor the building.

According to Phoenix chairman and founder Frank P. Crivello, renovations on the building were initially delayed due to COVID-19, but have accelerated in recent weeks. They expect to finish the first phase of this renovation to be complete in Fall 2020, and all projects on it will be completed by the first quarter of 2021.

“The City of Galesburg and Regional Economic Development partners have been extraordinary in helping us renovate and lease our properties in Galesburg,” said Crivello in a statement. “We were equally fortunate to find strong local contractors including Mechanical Service Inc. and Mangieri Electric. They have helped us quickly and efficiently renovate these properties. We are in late stage lease negotiations with a high quality company that would anchor the building at 1801 Monmouth Blvd.”

The Register-Mail will be informed once the lease has been executed. The proposed anchor leaser would occupy approximately two thirds of the building. Phoenix is also in active discussions with two other companies. One is a local manufacturer and the other is a wholesale distributor.

Crivello said he could not comment further on details about the proposed anchor company and what employment opportunities or industry they may bring to town. He did say that he believed that Phoenix would have the building fully leased by early 2021.

The Monmouth Boulevard space is 462,082 in square feet. The other property at 1000 S Linwood Drive is anchored by Blick Art Materials, and work continues on that property as well.

Substantial improvements have already been made reportedly to the property, and Blick has agreed to a long term lease extension on the space. Subject to delays caused by the pandemic, work on that site is expected to be completed by the end of 2020.

The Register-Mail as reached out to the Knox County Area Partnership for Economic Development for further comment. There, Director Ken Springer said he had no inside information, but stated that he was optimistic about the project.

“While it’s too early to discuss the impacts of a future tenant until details are made available, we are encouraged by the process being made by Phoenix investors on these two buildings,” he said via e-mail. “Any future re-use of the former Maytag manufacturing facility that creates jobs for the community is a positive development and is something to be celebrated by residents.”

He went on to say Galesburg was fortunate to have Phoenix purchase the properties, commending the company’s expertise and strong leasing experience.