JACKSON COUNTY AWARDED TWO GRANTS FOR DOWNTOWN REHABILITATION
The Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) announced on Thursday, April 5th that $1.8 million in Community Catalyst Building Remediation grants will be awarded to 18 Iowa communities for the remediation or redevelopment of underutilized buildings to stimulate economic growth in communities. IEDA made the announcement at an awards presentation during the Iowa Rural Development Summit which was held in Grinnell.
In Jackson County, the Jackson County Economic Alliance (JCEA) and East Central Intergovernmental Association (ECIA) helped the City of Maquoketa and the City of Bellevue apply successfully for two of these grants. Each of the cities were awarded a $100,000 grant.
In Bellevue, the grant was awarded to the Old Button Factory (305 S. Riverview St.) project to fully rehabilitate the iconic downtown limestone building on the riverfront owned by Water Street Partners LP. The intended uses of this building after rehabilitation include public restrooms, welcome center, retail space and co-working space for entrepreneurs. The City Council has committed a 15 year tax increment rebate, estimated at over $100,000, to match the State’s $100,000, and the private entity’s $1,589,600 investment.
In Maquoketa, the grant will be used for the Old Trophy Building (110 S. Main St.) project to rehabilitate this historic downtown building in the center of the downtown business district owned by Maquoketa Betterment Corporation. The goal of this rehabilitation is to bring the nearly 5,000 square foot commercial space back into productive use, and prepare the two upper story apartments for residential use. The City Council has committed a $100,000 tax increment grant to match the State’s $100,000, and a $100,000 commitment by the Timber City Development Corporation.
“These grants will be instrumental in the revitalization of communities statewide,” said IEDA Director Debi Durham. “Reinvesting in the redevelopment of buildings ultimately is about creating an environment where businesses and people can thrive.”
“The focus of this new grant program from the State, highlights the importance of downtown revitalization on the sustainability of our rural Iowa communities. These projects in Bellevue and Maquoketa have the potential to have a truly catalytic effect, and build on the vitality of these communities,” said Nic Hockenberry, Assistant Director of the JCEA.
The JCEA was also awarded the “Impact of People” recognition for their economic and community development efforts related to Hometown Pride, Parks to People, and downtown revitalization.
“Our office is humbled by this recognition and would like to share this with the many incredible partners that have been a part of our office’s efforts. It is only with these passionate people that progress in Jackson County can be achieved,” said David Heiar, Director of the JCEA.