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CR Council Moves Forward With Plans To Improve Flooded Areas
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (CBS 2/FOX 28) -- Cedar Rapids is moving forward with a plan to turn flooded-out areas into green space.
The greenway plan is in the works for land that the city bought out in Czech Village and Time Check.
The city council voted Tuesday to pass a resolution that allows the council to ask the Iowa Economic Development Authority for money to make that green space.
There is a lot of green space in northwest Cedar Rapids, but it's not the space city leaders hoped for.
"We have that situation down there with all the streets and sidewalks to nowhere," city council member Don Karr said.
The floods of 2008 washed out a lot of homes in Time Check and Czech Village.
The city then received a Community Development Block Grant, federal dollars, to but out 1300 homes and businesses within the hundred-year flood plain.
They're hoping to use $1.6 million in leftover money to tear out the roads, sidewalks and sewers in those areas and create real green space.
"Government always has a tendency to make a beautiful picture of what they think it should look like, but getting there takes money. With the flood, it gave us a little more opportunity to get that done, whether we wanted it or not," Karr said.
Linda Seger heads the Northwest Neighborhood Association and says folks aren't necessarily opposed to the idea. Still, they feel there are many questions left unanswered -- like, is the city giving up on luring new business or residents to the area?
"We're doing everything we can to promote and revitalize this area, and to redevelop it and move forward, so we want to keep all of our options on the table," Seger said.
Linda said residents haven't heard many details of the plan and feels the city is moving forward anyway.
The public works department tells CBS 2/FOX 28 nothing is final. The goal would be to start the project by 2015, and there will be public meetings before any final plan comes forward.
"There's an opportunity here to do something real positive," Linda said.
"It would be nice to get some additional park space for people to use," Karr said.