11 Jan Guttenberg Riverfront Development
NE IA RC&D is just completing this multi-year, multi-jurisdictional, multi-million dollar project to develop a marina on the Mississippi River in historic downtown Guttenberg. The goal of the project was to provide assistance to the City of Guttenberg to maximize natural resource based economic development without destroying sensitive resources in the Mississippi River, Mississippi River bottomland hardwood wetlands, and small coldwater tributaries to the river. NE IA RC&D helped the community throughout planning and implementation of the project. The first step was to conduct an environmental impact study, for which NE IA RC&D helped the city secure a Rural Business Enterprise Grant for $97,000. This grant was a significant factor in the success of the project as it helped the community identify the presence of and transfer one of the largest Higgens eye pearlymussel beds in the nation. (The Higgens eye pearlymussel is a threatened and endangered species.) The plans for the marina were modified 13 times before state and federal partners approved them but in the end the community’s willingness to accommodate and respect the Mississippi River ecosystem and the mussels as something they wanted to preserve and protect enabled them to move forward with the project. NE IA RC&D helped the community secure several grants for construction of the project including a Vision Iowa CAT Grant $500,000, an Iowa Great Places designation and grants of $528,000, a Vision Iowa award for Phase II of $300,000, an EDA award of $983,000, and a Boating Infrastructure Grant award of $452,000. As part of the Guttenberg Riverfront Development Project, NE IA RC&D helped the community secure a an Iowa WIRB grant totaling $500,000 for work within the community and the entire Miners Creek Watershed. The Miners Creek Watershed Project was developed in coordination with the Clayton County SWCD out of this effort.