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The City of Moline is buying the massive BridgePointe 485 building at 1 Montgomery Drive and the seven acres of downtown property at that site near the new I-74 bridge. Moline city officials announced the purchase of the building and land from the Heritage Church for $3.1 million at a news conference. The property will be used for future riverfront development that could include a mixture of commercial, recreation and residential projects as part of Moline’s long-term goal of redeveloping the downtown district, city officials said Friday, Sept. 23, at the public announcement. “This is long range work. We are at the beginning stages. … But this is bold action,” said Moline Mayor Sangeetha Rayapati, who was flanked by other city officials and representatives of Renew Moline and Heritage Church. Even though city officials have big plans for the property, many of the questions on the specifics of those plans will not be answered for months or years. Moline City Administrator Bob Vitas said that one of the next steps is to form a master plan for the property. This master plan process will likely happen next year and take six or seven months. Until that is done, it is not known exactly how the property will be used, the costs or timeline for possible construction projects at BridgePointe 485. The church purchased the site, which was the former complex of Kone Corp. and includes the landmark Kone elevator tower, offices and warehouse. However, during the announcement of the sale, city officials appeared to be presenting some possible ideas for the land. Officials had large informational displays on hand for the Mill Town Basin and Heart of the Arts District proposed projects. Those proposals feature a variety of recreation, retail business and art features that could go into a redeveloped downtown Moline. For instance, the Hearts of the Arts District may include an art gallery, rooftop restaurant and business incubator space. Some of the main goals for Moline’s downtown redevelopment projects include: building facilities to attract younger people to the community and be vital for future generations; bringing in more retail businesses; and helping stabilize businesses already in the city, Mr. Vitas said. However, he also suggested that future plans for the property would be mindful and respectful of the building’s long history, which dates back to the early 1930s. “There’s a lot of history here. You have to realize that a lot of people used to work here,” he added. “Purchasing the property allows us to evaluate all options for the riverfront, and to maximize the potential redevelopment of the area,” said Mr. Vitas in a news release. “The Heritage Church leadership team has been an active and constructive partner with the city in discussions of the future of Moline’s riverfront for both public and private projects. The city is grateful for the church’s willingness to consider a direct sale.” He added on Friday that the city and Heritage have been in talks for the past several months on the sale of the property. One of the reasons the church approved the sale is because the city shares its “vision” to improve the community, Mr. Vitas said. “We originally purchased BridgePointe with a vision to use it as a center of service to our community,” said Heritage Church Operations Pastor Paul Anderson in a news release. “We fully support the City of Moline’s community-minded vision for downtown and believe that the best way that we can serve our community is to release this property to them for the fulfillment of that vision. We look forward to continuing our partnership with the city and serving our community through our Esperanza Center location in the Floreciente Neighborhood of Moline, as well as our church campuses in Rock Island and Bettendorf.” The BridgePointe 485 building is about 119,114 square feet. The building is a “center of community collaboration, housing Heritage Network offices, group gathering spaces and offices for tenant-partners,” according to the Heritage Church website. A sign outside the building lists the tenants as Heritage Church, Safer Foundation, Skapa Studio, Quad Cities Open Network, Family Resources and Birth to Five Illinois. During Friday’s news conference, Mr. Anderson said the church will start moving out of the building in the coming weeks and expects to be out by the end of the year. Mr. Vitas said the city will meet with the other building tenants to help assure their smooth transition to other locations. “This area is truly Moline’s ‘front porch’ and the acquisition of the property will allow the city maximum flexibility in creating development opportunities – both public and private,” said Alexandra Elias, CEO of Renew Moline, in a news release. “We have enjoyed working with Heritage Church these past four years and commend the leadership team on their thoughtful stewardship of the property during their tenure and now in releasing it to future possibilities.”