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The state approved a $960,000 transportation economic assistance grant to improve Nicholson Road at Dunkelow Road, which is near the Caledonia Business Park.

The project is part of a tax incremental financing project leftover from the Unico project, which was approved in September 2012.

The grant, which will be matched by the village, will pay for half of the cost of the $1.9 million project. Construction is expected to begin in the spring of 2015.

Gov. Scott Walker approved the grant on Tuesday. The request was part of a tax incremental finance district the village approved in September 2012 for the expansion of Unico Inc., which is based in the Caledonia Business Park. The purpose of the project is to improve the road for truck traffic.

A TIF district is a development tool municipalities can use to attract business.

Regal Beloit owns Unico, 3725 Nicholson Rd., and currently employs 283 people at the Caledonia plant. The company is expected to grow the total employee count to 371 by mid-2015, an agreement the company made with the village in return for tax incentives.The company also built a 65,232-square-foot addition.

The company develops and manufactures drive systems for wind turbines.

State Rep. Thomas Weatherston (R-Caledonia), who is also a former Village Trustee in Caledonia, was involved in the project at both the state and local level.

“I am happy that this grant was awarded so that we can make needed road improvements and bring more jobs to Racine County,” Weatherston said. “This grant will enable the creation of 420 jobs in the region, with 192 of those in Caledonia. This grant shows that both state and local governments are committed to creating jobs in Wisconsin.”

   

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Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for Patch.com, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.