EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. — East St. Louis Mayor Robert Eastern III delivered his State of the City address Thursday night at the SIUE East St. Louis Center.

Eastern highlighted the progress he said the city is making, including combating crime with the addition of a new police unit that works in connection with the Illinois State Police.

He also pointed to nearly $800 million in development that he said is planned in the city.

“The ultimate goal of this partnership is to build East St. Louis into a state-of-the-art smart city that will have different features, such as a solar farm, solar homes, and a city-wide insulate of things and other things to come,” said Eastern.

“While creating green and renewable energy, East St. Louis is the first predominantly African American urban community to experience this type of growth,” the mayor added. “And it’s something to look forward to.”

The mayor said much of the development will come from partnerships with local developers. The full details on when projects and funding would be put into play have not yet been released.