Davenport receives $10.75 million state grant for proposed sports complex

Monday, Jun 22, 2015

A $10.75 million state grant was awarded Friday to the city for its River80 sports complex project.

Davenport Mayor Bill Gluba was in Des Moines Friday for the Iowa Economic Development Authority's announcement of the reinvestment district grant.

The money will go toward a proposed $73.8 million project near Interstates 74 and 80 that would include Iowa's largest indoor-outdoor tournament center for football, baseball, soccer and softball, as well as retail and hotel development and a "FlowRider" indoor surfing facility.

Davenport initially sought $21.75 million for the project. Mayor Gluba said city officials will seek alternative funding options, including public-private investment partnerships.

"It's a big investment," he noted.

The project features a four-field outdoor youth baseball/girls softball complex, an indoor/outdoor continuous wave "FlowRider" entertainment center and mixed-use buildings totaling approximately 138,00 square feet.

This was the second year Iowa cities could submit applications for the IEDA reinvestment money. The sites cannot exceed 25 acres and must be in an enterprise zone or urban renewal area.

Davenport's River 80 Reinvestment District covers 25 acres within a 250-acre site at the southwest corner of I-74 and I-80, just east of the Elmore Avenue extension currently under construction.

Mayor Gluba said the project could generate millions in hotel/motel tax revenue to help develop the city's riverfront, as well as $1 million annually in tax revenue to the Davenport Community School District and another $1.8 million in tax revenue to the city.

City officials have said the project could create 1,000 jobs and have a $2.52 billion economic impact. Davenport has until March 1, 2016, to finalize the agreement with the IEDA.

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