CMEC secures REDLG loan for new convention center

At the groundbreaking were Steve Horve, Horve Builders; Jeremy Yost, Yost Enterprises LLC; Mattoon Mayor Tim Gover; Amy Borntrager, CEO, CMEC; Ed Dowd, Mattoon Chamber of Commerce; and Jessica Killough, Charleston Chamber of Commerce.

Ground was broken on Sept. 18 for Coles Centre, a new hotel and convention center east of Mattoon, thanks in part to a $2 million loan from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Economic Development Loan and Grant Program secured by Coles-Moultrie Electric Cooperative (CMEC), Mattoon.

The $15 million project will include a Hilton Garden Inn hotel, on-site restaurant and a connected 8,200 square-foot facility. The center will be named the Coles-Moultrie Convention Center in recognition of the project’s loan sponsorship by Coles-Moultrie Electric Cooperative. The cooperative acts as a pass-through for the USDA funds.

State USDA Director Doug Wilson called it the “best use” of federal tax revenue and will help with future development in the area.

Developer Jeremy Yost and his family’s business, Yost Enterprises LLC, envision the project as an anchor for additional development and employment in the area. Businesses have recently announced intentions to build at Coles Centre – Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois plans to build a new service center and HSHS plans to build a clinic.