Janesville gets state grant to move business away from river

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Marcia Nelesen
Thursday, March 28, 2013

— The owners of Adams & Sons Roofing—situated along the Rock River at Main Street and Centerway—are looking for space to relocate now that the city has received a state grant of $602,000 to pay the costs, a city official said.

The money would be used to purchase the approximate 1.2 acres, demolish the building and relocate the business. It comes from a community block grant emergency assistance program meant to mitigate future property damage by relocating businesses outside flood plains.

The building at 411 N. Main St. sustained significant damage in the 2008 flood, and owners tore down a portion that extended over the river, Jennifer Petruzzello, neighborhood services director, said. Three residential buildings to the north owned by Adams Roofing also were damaged. The company demolished the homes.

The area would be restored to open space and could never be redeveloped. A bike trail likely would be built along the river, Petruzzello said.

The grant expires at the end of the year.

Company officials are interested in relocating if they can reach an agreement with the city on a sale price and, most important, find a place to relocate that meets their needs, Petruzzello said.

“This is a voluntary program,” she said.

The Gazette was not able to reach a representative from Adams Roofing by press time.

Adams Roofing is a long-time family business that provides residential and commercial roofing and siding.

The Adams Roofing site has long been mentioned as an integral part of city riverfront redevelopment plans. In a 1998 plan, the spot was mentioned as a good place for a restaurant with a dock or a microbrewery. That study, however, was done before the 100-year flood in 2008.

Traxler Park is just upstream, and the city wants to connect the park to the downtown.

The city owns more than 75 percent of the riverfront in the city—11 of 15 miles. Some of the segments are strips that allow access to the river or have just enough room for a trail.

Much of the land is in Riverside and Traxler parks and along Afton Road on the south side.

Last updated: 8:16 am Monday, April 29, 2013

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