Peoria Landmark #473
Gateway Building – 200 NE Water St., built at a cost of 2 1/2 million dollars. The Grand Ballroom is 4,450 square feet and can accommodate 290 guests sitting banquet style.
Peoria Journal Star, October 11, 1997:
The three-story building , which features an arched walkway through its center and a wide balcony overlooking the Illinois River, is expected to host privately catered receptions and banquets on a packed schedule once it’s fully ready for business.
But its planners also see the Gateway as the city’s formal reception hall, available to businesses that seek conference and seminar space with state-of-the-art audio and visual equipment.
Caterpillar Inc., which donated $1.2 million toward its construction, will use the Gateway often for such events, Tincher said.
“If we had to borrow all the money to build it, it would’ve been a risky deal,” he said. “But with Cat’s help, it’s guaranteed the building will pay for itself and more.“
Peoria Journal Star, June 23, 2004:
Although the city-owned Gateway Building is financially drowning, it should not be sold, says a private-sector group charged with finding ways to turn it around.
The Gateway Building costs about $150,000 annually to operate and $340,000 in annual debt service.
Its $130,000 programming budget is covered through bookings revenues.
Selling the building would not benefit the city or the riverfront, Pedulla said. “I think we pretty much agree with the City Council that that’s not an alternative.”
However, city officials should look into refinancing building bonds, the commission said.
Another recommendation is to charge a minimal set-up and clean-up fee to groups who currently use the building at no cost, including government groups and some not-for-profits. Last year, the Gateway Building hosted nearly 250 events, of which about one-fifth were held for free, said Bill Roeder, superintendent of the riverfront division for the Peoria Park District, which operates the Gateway for the city.
Peoria Journal Star, October 24, 2007:
A building viewed by some as a centerpiece for riverfront activities but also a “financial black hole for the city” is up for sale.
But whoever buys or leases it will not be able to take ownership for at least a year, according to an agreement the city has with the Peoria Park District.
The City Council voted 10-1 Tuesday to have the city issue a request for proposals for the sale or lease of the Gateway Building, a 22,000-square-foot building at 200 NE Water St.
“Let’s see if there is anyone out there to buy or lease this building from us,” 3rd District Councilman Bob Manning said.
Apparently no buyers stepped up and I couldn’t find much more beyond this. The debt is to be paid off in 2017.