Redevelopment project in Council Bluffs aims to bring life back to a historic building

Downtown Council Bluffs to bring life to a historic building.
Published: Oct. 28, 2020 at 3:53 PM CDT
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COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (WOWT) - One of downtown Council Bluff’s most historic buildings will soon reopen after sitting empty for a few years.

The old Iowa Clothing Store will soon be home to 19 new apartments and retail businesses.

“530 West Broadway is a fantastic building. It’s our diamond in the rough,” says Sheryl Garst, The 712 Initiative CEO.

In its prime, you can see just how lively this area was.

Right now The 712 Initiative owns the building.

They plan to keep the outside of the building historic.

But inside, there will be 19 apartments and retail space.

“It’s that missing segment. We are a block away from Bayliss Park, our town square. We see this building as an entrance to downtown,” says Garst.

The apartments will range in price. Some from 500 a month, others costing a grand a month.

Most of the project has been paid for already.

On Tuesday The Peter Kiewet Foundation awarded the project a 300 thousand dollar grant.

Project leaders say this will hopefully draw more people nearby downtown businesses.

“People walking their dogs after 5 o’clock. Eating breakfast at Main Street Cafe. It’s really going to be the next big development block for council bluffs,” says Garst.

Nearby business owners like Zach Sommers say they believe this project will help them grow.

“I hope we can get some new youthful energy in this area,” says Zach Sommers, owner of Xtreme Wheels Bike and Sports.

Construction is set to start in June 2021.

Once it’s complete, project leaders say they hope to bring a piece of Council Bluffs history back to life.

“The apartments, the energy it’s going to bring. We hope to recreate what was lost,” says Garst.

This project is part of a larger three-building project.

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