Progress 2003
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Prudential Financial
Stephen M. Dillender, Rep.
1701 River Drive, Suite 100
Moline IL
309 762-0711 ext. 7156
Psychology Associates LTD
4101 John Deere Rd.
Moline Il.
(309) 764-1670
Psychology Associates LTD
4101 John Deere Rd.
Moline Il.
(309) 764-1670
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Quad Cities Better Business Bureau
Quad City Bank & Trust
4 Area Locations
563 344-0600
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Quad City Blind Factory
1414 E. 47th St.
Davenport IA
563-359-6545
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Moline IL
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Quad City International Airport
Moline IL
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Quad-Cities Online
1720 5th Ave.
Moline IL
309 757-4912
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Quad-Cities Online
1720 5th Ave.
Moline IL
309 757-4912
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Quad-Cities Online
1720 5th Ave.
Moline IL
309 757-4912
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Salute to Business

February 14, 2003 12:20 PM

Is New Boston ferry feasible again?

By Jason M. Rodriguez, Staff writer

Several wing dams and the Iowa River have made the proposed Mississippi River ferry in New Boston here a possibility.

The twirl caused by the dams and the Iowa River has caused the Mississippi River to deepen at Brass Island. It's a discovery made by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers that prompted communities in Louisa County, Iowa, and Mercer County, Ill., to explore returning ferry service between the states.

``It's exciting to learn about the possibilities, the tourism dollars that could be brought here because of the ferry,'' said Jim Barnes, chairman of the Mercer Growth Organization. ``By this summer, we'll learn about all the possibilities and if the ferry is feasible.''

In fact, progress session dates have been scheduled by Dunbar Jones Partnership and Stanley Consultants of Muscatine, who are teaming up for the feasibility study. Though specific times and locations have not been set, the session will be concuted March 8 and 14, April 15, May 1, June 1. A final report will be presented July 15.

The Mississippi River has no crossings connecting Illinois and Iowa between Muscatine and Burlington, Iowa, a distance of about 50 miles.

The task force has a total of $88,260 -- a $58,260 grant and $30,000 in local contributions -- to spend on the feasibility of a ferry from New Boston to Oakville, Iowa. The study also will look at what tourist attractions could be expected for the towns' riverfronts.

Cost estimates to build ferry landings and road improvements are more than $1 million. The ferry could transport 15,000 vehicles a year, cost about $70,000 to operate and generate $60,000 to $90,000 a year in revenues.

Mr. Barnes said it's been a project that Mercer County officials have been looking forward to working on for a long time.

``The potential is there,'' he said. ``Now we just need proof that this is a money maker. We'll need to know for sure.''

Staff writer Jason Rodriguez can be reached at (309)

582-5138, or by e-mail at href="mailto:jayrodriguez@qconline.com">jayrodriguez@qconline.com.