Downtown Living, Waterfront Views Lure Newcomers

By Hollie Deese on April 28, 2011 at 2:21 pm EST

There must be something in the water that attracts people to Peoria. Or maybe it’s the water itself, attracting urbanites to the luxurious condos located right on the Illinois River.

The Lofts at Waterfront Place is a new development in what once was Illinois Antique Center. The early 20th-century manufacturing building features exposed brick walls and high ceilings in its 23 lofts. Add a stunning view of the river and Peoria Lake, and it’s practically irresistible. Modern touches mix well with the historic structure, including large, energy-efficient windows and sound-deadening walls.

In addition to the riverfront appeal, Peoria’s neighborhoods are full of character, marked by restored buildings and a sense of history.

The Warehouse District inspires creative types with its industrial feel. A mix of lofts, industrial buildings and vacant lots, the area is slated to be developed into a vibrant mixed-use community.

And over in the more established Old Town North neighborhood, dozens of housing opportunities abound with easy access to St. Francis Medical Center, downtown and the river.

University East is filled with young families and couples. Its proximity to Bradley University and walkability to Main Street make it an ideal location for active families and young professionals.

In Glen Oak, look for stellar views of the river and valley, as well as diversity in character of the homes. Recreation opportunities thrive in this neighborhood, which is near the zoo and park of the same name.

One of the most ambitious projects is Renaissance Park, a sprawling development of business and residences, with the Main Street Corridor serving as its core. Home to the Peoria NEXT Innovation Center, the streets are lined with boutiques, restaurants and small businesses. And this vision of what is next for Peoria marks the future of downtown living here.

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