The City of Springfield is moving forward with a project to make retail spaces in a downtown parking garage ready for tenants and their customers by the end of this year.
Springfield City Commissioners approved this week the increase of a contract with Arcon Builders regarding that project. The increase pertains to an amount not to exceed $21,869.63
The approval of that ordinance by commissioners during their public meeting this week puts the total cost of the build out of those retail spaces at about $406,407.
The conversion of 3,000 square feet of retail space at the garage on North Fountain is slated to be completed by October and at least one tenant is expected to move in by the end of this year.
Springfield City Manager Bryan Heck said they are working on an official agreement with that potential tenant and have not released their name at this point.
Paul Hicks, the former emergency services manager for Springfield, previously told the News-Sun that the potential tenant would take up two of the three retail spaces in the parking garage.
The idea is that those spaces would be filled with a sit-down restaurant as well as a store that would offer dry-goods and carryout.
Heck said that accommodations will be made to some of the retail space being built out with that potential tenant in mind, who is expected to reimburse the city for those improvements.
Heck said some of those accommodations is combining two retail spaces into one and will be made if the tenant decides to move forward with the decision to lease that space.
The accommodations altered an initial request to increase the contract for the project that would have put the costs of the build out at a little over $385,000.
City officials said by offering retail spaces at the garage that opened last year, it will add new businesses and economic activity to a corridor that has few vacant retail spaces left.
The other retail space at the parking garage has not been filled yet, but Heck said the city has been in talks with several interested parties.
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