The initiative, through the Environmental Protection Agency, brings local leaders together with a team of experts.
“They’ll help put together an action plan that is designed by the community that aims to use the local food system as the driver of some type of community development. Whether that’s a community project. a food hub, a grocery store,” Greater Peoria Economic Development Council (EDC) Director of Communications & Outreach Tory Dahlhoff said.
On Wednesday the EDC and other local organizations held a pop up at 1312 South West Adams Street to show the community how the building could be transformed into a “healthy hub.”
“We really wanted to envision it as a community engagement center with a grocery store, a cultural center. With all of these different kind of community assets as well as things that the community needs. It sits at kind of the nexus of the South Side and the Warehouse District so it holds a lot of potential,” City of Peoria Grants Coordinator Sara Maillacheruvu said.
Bringing something like this to this part of Peoria is a key part of the plan.
“We’d love to have someone take on this initiative and have a CDC or a community development corporation to help rebuild the South Side and re-innovate the South Side,” South Side Community United for Change President Martha Ross said.
Together with local leadership the group of experts will create a wellness plan in hopes of improving the quality of life in Peoria.
There will be a workshop on from 9 a.m-5 p.m. on Thursday at 214 Pecan Street. The workshop will be open to the public and lunch will be served.