October 2005 – Via one of its current projects, Thouvenot, Wade & Moerchen, Inc. has succeeded in helping the City of Belleville, Illinois, retain two local businesses, each who have been part of the City’s history for more than 90 years.
The Wagner Motor Car Company is the oldest family-owned new car dealership in the Metro-East, having opened its doors August 1, 1912. Oliver C. Joseph opened in 1914 and is the oldest Dodge dealership in the entire world. Yet the need for room to expand and the exodus of other dealerships to more high-traffic locations raised the possibility that both would relocate outside Belleville.
While the City of Belleville worked aggressively to help assure that did not happen, TWM assisted through securing a new intersection on Illinois Route 15. The firm had been working with a developer who wanted ingress and egress access to the four-lane divided highway, and was successful in getting IDOT to authorize an at grade signalized intersection. In doing so, the firm also created the possibility for additional commercial development along the highly traveled roadway.
As it turns out, the intersection was also within 2 miles of the current locations of both car dealerships, making it easy for both to get corporate approval for relocation to the site. Both dealerships will therefore be able to relocate and build new, larger facilities, but remain within the city limits of Belleville.
TWM’s Transportation Department is also designing a new three-lane road through the new intersection as an extension of 17th Street to Frank Scott Parkway near the new Belleville West High School. The firm’s Land Development Department is providing civil engineering site design for both of the dealerships, as well as the extension of water, sewer and other utilities to the sites. Construction on the new car dealership sites will begin this month. Project managers estimate an August 2006 completion date.
The broad nature of TWM’s services and experience has allowed the single firm to handle all aspects of the project, from transportation, environmental and commercial site engineering, to coordination between multiple developers, the City and IDOT.