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Downtown Davenport Partnership invests in revitalization programs to rebound from flood, pandemic

Published: Jun. 30, 2021 at 6:19 PM CDT
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DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) - Downtown Davenport has struggled with record flooding, the pandemic, and construction. The Downtown Davenport Partnership (DDP) held their annual meeting Wednesday morning and discussed their hopes to rebound with new investment opportunities.

“I think we can all agree that this is the year to bounce back and I think we are very well poised for that,” says Kyle Carter, Executive Director with the Downtown Davenport Partnership.

The partnership organization says after flooding and COVID-19, it’s finally going to look a little more like normal.

“You are going to see all the festivals come back, you are going to see all these big apartment buildings that have been under construction pop up. We had thirty businesses open this year and we have about fifteen more on the way. So, I think are going to see a lot of new activity popping up downtown,” says Carter.

The partnership is investing millions of dollars into new programs to revitalize the area. These include increasing public safety, adding a hospitality ambassadors program, increasing housing, and renovating outdoor spaces.

“We are going to see so much new business of people who were cooped up and money that needs to be spent and events that people are going to go to,” says Carter.

Carter says thirty new or expanded businesses have joined in the last year. Rubberstamps, a former Bettendorf business that was destroyed in a fire, will soon join the downtown area.

“We closed on the old Mid-American building that’s on Third and LeClaire. So, we will be moving into a bigger facility,” says Gwendolyn Lee, owner of Rubberstamps.net.

Lee says the growth and potential of downtown Davenport has encouraged her to invest in the area.

“There is so much opportunity and downtown is active and the growth is inspiring. We are switching between celebration and tears basically on a weekly basis but the celebrations are becoming more frequent,” says Lee.

The Downtown Davenport Partnership says more than 600 million dollars have been invested in projects in the area since 2000. The group says recent investments to downtown include twenty seven million dollars leading to fourteen new projects and thirty new or expanded business completed in the last year. Forty nine million dollars of investments are now under construction. Fifty nine million on planned projects are still on the way.

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