Is Portillo’s really coming to Moline?

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WQAD Channel 8, December 1, 2017, by Tory Brecht [link to article]

MOLINE, Illinois — Remarking on the recent string of restaurant and retail successes in Moline over the past year, the city’s economic development director Ray Forsythe dropped this tantalizing tidbit during a presentation to the City Council on Monday, Nov. 27.

“Now, we’re working on Portillo’s,” he said.

Rumors that one of Chicagoland’s most popular restaurant chains could be coming to the Quad Cities have circulated for months, but Forsythe added more fuel to the fire this week, noting that the city’s retail attraction consultant has been actively courting the chain and sharing with them possible locations in the city.

That consulting firm – Birmingham, Alabama-based Retail Strategies – already has a strong track record luring national chains to Moline. Hired on a three-year contract in 2014, Retail Strategies is credited with assisting Moline in attracting the Olive Garden, Panda Express, Popeye’s, Verizon, Chick-fil-A, Dick’s Sporting Goods and Sam’s Club to town, Forsythe said. Retail Strategies’ consulting fee … is much less than what the city takes in via sales tax from the new businesses generated, Moline officials added.

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