Work resumes on the Frontier Lodge and Conference Center, which is to include an indoor water park, but the opening might not come until 2009.

 


 


People hoping for a lodge and indoor water park in LaSalle might have to wait unti the spring of 2009, according to a project spokeswoman.


 


The building permit was issued two weeks ago for the Frontier Lodge and Conference Center.


 


"We may have to wait til 2009, but the end project is worth the wait," spokeswoman Jan Lawrence of Frontier Lodge LLC said Tuesday.


 


"The LaSalle community will be happy in the end," she said. "The economy will enjoy the added tourism this lodge will bring."


 


Mayor Art Washkowiak said Friday the framework will be up in a matter of days.


"What I am being told is to expect the main lodge to be vertical in two weeks, and in a week or so to expect the roadways leading to five or six condos that have already been put up to be finished," he said.


Washkowiak said the sewer system and landscaping are already in place. "This is going up pretty rapidly now that the permits are in place. Even with the heavy rain we had in the past few weeks, the contractors have putting in a number of hours to get this project up and going."


 


The lodge and conference center, which includes a 61,000 square-foot water park, was to open this summer. The estimated $140 million project was pushed back because of new investors, but the architects and construction crew remained the same.


 


"We had to make some adjustments when we had an investor step out, but the project goal remains on track," Lawrence said.


 


Plans call for patrons spa treatments, full menu dining and an 18,000 square foot conference center. It will also offer condominiums and rental cottages for people interested in staying for long periods.


 


Construction began in July 2006 just north of Interstate 80 near Illinois Route 178 before the original contractor pulled out. Last year Wisconsin developer Joe Comer pulled out of the project.


 


"Why he pulled out is not an issue now," Washkowiak said. "The project is back on, and we are looking forward to the opening of the new lodge."


 


 


Reach Journal Star reporter Ann Weeks at (309) 686-3041 or state@pjstar.com.