Champaign-based Volition staying on target with games

CHAMPAIGN – Video-game sales have dropped dramatically this year, and Champaign-based Volition Inc. isn't immune to the falloff.

From March through July, industry sales were down every month compared with the same month last year, the Los Angeles Times reported, citing sales data from market research firm The NPD Group. July sales were down 29 percent from a year ago.

A move in the right direction for Goodwill Industries

CHAMPAIGN – Goodwill Industries plans to move into the former Rhodes Furniture building in north Champaign later this fall.

UI Research park to get street extensions

CHAMPAIGN – Look for several new streets to criss-cross the University of Illinois Research Park in a few years.

The university expects $6.8 million in state and federal grants for extending Fourth Street south to Windsor Road, Hazelwood Drive east to Fourth Street and Gerty Drive east to Fourth Street, said Bruce Walden, a director in the UI's Office of Capital Programs and Real Estate Services.

UI's flash index stays unchanged in August

URBANA – The University of Illinois flash index stayed the same in August after dropping 10 of the preceding 11 months.

But that doesn't mean Illinois' employment numbers will increase any time soon, UI economist J. Fred Giertz said.

Danville to apply for funding for beltline

DANVILLE – Although one alderman philosophically objects to the federal stimulus program and another questions whether people will really be put to work with those dollars, the Danville City Council on Tuesday authorized applying for a $45 million federal stimulus grant to build a beltline highway to attract economic development.

Alderman Sharon Mc- Mahon, Ward 4, said that no one can predict the future and know when economic development will occur if a beltline highway is built, but it will create the opportunity.

FutureGen backers reach deal with Energy Department

MATTOON – Backers of the clean-coal FutureGen power plant proposed for Mattoon have about four months to cut costs, raise more money and build more support for the project under an agreement signed by the partners.

BLDD Architects plans open house for downtown space

CHAMPAIGN – An architectural firm will show off its new quarters in downtown Champaign this afternoon, roughly four months after it moved in.

BLDD Architects will host an open house from 4 to 7:30 p.m. today at its new location, 17 Taylor St. That building for many years housed the offices of the Urban League of Champaign County and later served as the home of Verde Gallery and Jennifer North.

VA planning event to mark Iraq, Afghanistan vets' return

Veterans Affairs Illiana Health Care System will host a Welcome Home for Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans from 3 to 7 p.m. Sept. 12 at Camp Lincoln in Springfield.

There will be food, prizes, children's games, live music and information on veterans' ben- efits, programs and services.

Large pool of job-training funds available

CHAMPAIGN – Job-training money is plentiful this year, and Parkland College is encouraging area companies to take advantage of it.

The increased availability is "a great opportunity" for businesses expanding or wanting to train groups of people for specific jobs, said Joe Streit, program manager for Parkland College Business Training.

Added units bring vacancies, discounts to fill them

CHAMPAIGN – Apartment buildings on the University of Illinois campus are filling up – but landlords say in many cases, it's taking longer to lease them out and requiring a few discounts.

Last year's opening of high-rise apartment complexes on Green Street and Springfield Avenue boosted the number of units available on campus. And this year and last, landlords felt the effects.