Economic Development Board approves Reinvestment District Funding for Waterloo
The Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) board today met to approve funding for the City of Waterloo through the Iowa Reinvestment District program.
The board approved the maximum benefit amount of $12 million for the TechWorks Campus Reinvestment District plan submitted by the City of Waterloo. The Iowa Reinvestment District Program is designed to assist communities in developing transformative projects that will improve the quality of life, create and enhance unique opportunities, and substantially benefit the community, region and state. The program provides for up to $100 million in new state hotel/motel and sales tax revenues to be “reinvested” within approved districts. Districts cannot exceed 25 acres in size, and must be in an Urban Renewal Area.
Iowa Reinvestment District plans must include tax revenues generated by “new retail establishments” and “new lessors”. New retail establishments cannot exceed 50 percent of the total proposed capital investment. At least one of the new proposed projects within the district must reach a total capital investment of $10 million. And, the total amount of new tax revenues to be remitted to the municipality cannot exceed 35 percent of the total cost of all proposed projects in the district plan.
In 2014, 10 municipalities submitted applications, with three receiving a score in excess of 70 points (out of 100). In June, 2014, the IEDA board approved provisional funding for the projects in the City of Des Moines, the City of Muscatine and the City of Waterloo. Final application materials fully meeting all of the program’s requirements are due prior to March 1, 2015.
The City of Waterloo submitted its final application on Jan. 23, 2015, and today the IEDA board acted to award the maximum $12 million benefit amount contingent on the receipt of a fully executed, amended development agreement between the City of Waterloo, Cedar Valley TechWorks and the developer.
The TechWorks district, located at the west end of downtown and made up of land donated by Deere & Company, would have a capital investment of $74.1 million and include three projects. The first is a mixed-use development including a business-class hotel, industrial incubator, private sector lab and manufacturing maker-space, and John Deere Tractor & Engine Museum. The second project area includes commercial out-lots such as a restaurants and retailers that complement other project areas. The third project area includes a marina for boat storage, boat sales, fuel sales and a riverfront restaurant.
Final applications for the cities of Des Moines and Muscatine have not yet been submitted to the IEDA board.