Business View Civil and Municipal | March 2021

134 CIVIL AND MUNICIPAL MARCH 2021 million. Some $6 million is being spent on the replacement of about 2,500 old lead service lines leading to people’s homes. The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency is providing a grant for the service line replacement, and a 25% forgivable loan from the agency is being used to help finance the combined well and water treatment plant project. To accommodate residential growth, Freeport is open to new housing developments. The city has an adequate number of apartments and condominiums but could use some more single-family homes. Employment-wise, the local economy has plenty of job opportunities that allow people to progress in their careers while staying settled in the same location. Met Life has been renovating its downtown building and considering increasing the number of people it employs in Freeport. And Tri Star Metals recently expanded its facility by 150,000 square feet. The $3.8 million project coincided with the addition of about 35 new jobs. begun. Chicago-based mobile network operator U.S. Cellular is in the process of installing conduit throughout Freeport. “And as part of our agreement with them, they’re also giving us a couple strands of fiber for our use as well,” Bukas acknowledges. “We could either use it for our own community, our own needs, or we can lease it to other businesses. So we’re excited about that.” In downtown Freeport, the city is spending about $3.2 million on its Chicago Avenue streetscape project. This will involve the replacement of underground infrastructure, as well as repaving the roads and redoing sidewalks to make them compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. The Adams Corridor project will expand sidewalks and create bicycle lanes in one of the city’s main thoroughfares. That initiative is expected to cost about $4 million. In other infrastructure updates, a new well is being drilled and a new water treatment plant will be built next to it for a total cost of about $9