IDNR: Build New Eagle Creek Resort, Instead Of Fixing Up Old One

Eagle Creek Resort at Lake Shelbyville, before its closing in 2009.

Eagle Creek Resort in better days, before mold problems forced it to close in 2009. The IDNR now considers it beyond repair.

Photo: Illinois Issues

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources says it will work with local officials to seek new proposals for redeveloping the shuttered Eagle Creek Resort and Conference Center on Lake Shelbyville. But the current building will have to go.

Engineering consultants hired by the IDNR said in an assessment survey released Tuesday that fixing up the Eagle Creek facility would cost nearly $18 million. IDNR Director Wayne Rosenthal says with that in mind, it’s best to demolish the old building and start over.

"We will consider all ideas for the resort that will result in development of a great visitor destination, and the best deal for taxpayers," said Rosenthal in a news release.

State Senator Chapin Rose welcomed the state agency’s willingness to start looking for a developer for a new Eagle Creek Resort. In a news release, the Republican from Mahomet said he’s spoken with several “qualified developers” who are interested in the site in Shelby County.

"These groups are serious companies with proven track records of success in hotel management, the hospitality industry, and resort management," said Rose in a news release. "There is serious interest in the (Eagle Creek) property and to make it a crown jewel for our region."

The Eagle Creek resort and conference center opened in the Eagle Creek State Recreation Area near Findlay in Shelby County in the 1980's.

But it closed in 2009, due to mold problems. State and local officials have been searching for a private developer to revive it. A Decatur-based developer took over the site in 2010, but pulled out in 2014, without reopening the facility. Only the adjacent Eagle Creek golf course has been reopened successfully.

Story source: WILL