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Monmouth Attracts New Business

Emily Boyer
Smithfield Farmland in Monmouth, IL

Monmouth’s largest employer is bringing even more business to the city.

A $30 million refrigerated warehouse and distribution center will be operated by Cloverleaf Cold Storage and serve the needs of Smithfield Farmland which already employees about 1,500 in Monmouth.

Governor Pat Quinn attended Friday’s ground breaking. He says this project is proof Illinois’ economy is improving.

Credit Emily Boyer / TSPR
Governor Pat Quinn and others break ground on $30 million cold storage facility

“If you are breathing we want you working in Illinois," Quinn said. "That’s our philosophy. A 155 new jobs here, good jobs, middle class jobs that you can support a family on.”

Cloverleaf is receiving an incentive package worth about $6 million. Monmouth Mayor Rod Davies says about $3 million of that will come from 10-years of tax breaks.

“We are grateful that you have chosen Monmouth and we will work hard to be the best host community possible," Davies said. "This change is for the long-term economic strength of Monmouth and the entire region.”

This is the first Illinois site for Cloverleaf Cold Storage. The company is based in Sioux City, Iowa. The facility is scheduled to be up and running by March 2015.

TheIllinois Department of Transportation plans to build a new access road for the facility and widen Route 67 to accommodate the 1,000 trucks a week expected to frequent the facility.

"Because of all the semi traffic they’ll be putting in turn lanes out on actual route 67 itself, widen it and make turn lanes available there," Davies said. "We can’t have semi-trucks waiting on the highway to turn into the access road. They want cars to be able to keep moving and go around them.”

I-DOT says it will spend around $1.5 million on the road improvements. The state agency hopes to start construction this year but it could not disclose a time frame.

Emily Boyer is a former reporter at Tri States Public Radio.