State of Illinois has grant money to help develop megasites of 200+ acres, including suburban locations

A new grant from the state of Illinois makes money available to develop “megasites”:

Photo by Jahoo Clouseau on

Gov. J.B. Pritzker on Monday announced the creation of a $40 million grant program to help businesses find and build on large development-ready areas known as “megasites” across the state, including several in the suburbs.

Megasites are large swaths of land intended for businesses such as factories, warehouses and distribution centers. Pritzker said developing these sites will help make Illinois more competitive, especially as sectors including clean energy and manufacturing are rapidly expanding in the U.S…

Intersect Illinois, an independent economic development nonprofit working with the state on the program, lists among 151 megasites two in Hoffman Estates, one in West Chicago, four in Lake County and five in the Fox Valley. Several more are in South and Southwest suburbs, and more than two dozen are southwest of Joliet around Minooka, Channahon and Morris…

The program is open to private entities, nonprofits and local governments, and the application portal is open through April 6. Those receiving the grant must match each dollar granted by the state with other private or local funding.

This is a good example of how governments and private interests work together in the United States to develop land. The state government provides money in concert with more local funding in order to help spur development. Without the government money, the development may not happen.

This money is marked to help with large projects. Is the assumption that it is difficult to entice companies to such sites in Illinois or that local governments do not have enough resources to address needs for properties this large?

If these properties are not developed as megasites (versus being developed in parts), how much is lost?

This will be worth checking on in a decade or two to see what exactly emerges on these megasites.

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