Waterloo looking to expand urban revitalization program - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Waterloo looking to expand urban revitalization program


The city of Waterloo is looking to expand its urban revitalization program to the entire city limits.  Currently, that program offers tax incentives for you to build a new home or make improvements to your property.  

The city is interested in expanding the program in an effort to see more new homes being built.  In the past few years, cities neighboring Waterloo have seen three and four times its number of new homes being built.  So a few years ago, Mayor Buck Clark organized the GROW committee to study ways the city could get more families and developers to build new houses.  That committee recommended expanding the urban revitalization program to offer 3 years worth of tax breaks to anyone that builds a new single or two family house in the city.

"In about the late 1980s, the city of Des Moines did the exact same thing and put it over the entire city, and it almost tripled their numbers of housing.  So we definitely think it's worked in the past, and we hope it will work here," said Noel Anderson with Waterloo Planning & Zoning.

Of course the long term goal is to get more new homes on the city's tax rolls.  And the city says in most cases, the home buyer of a new property will benefit from the tax breaks, rather than the developer.  But the tax credit program does give developers and extra incentive to build properties, as buyers learn about the credits and become interested in new home construction.

The city council still has to approve the expansion of the urban revitalization program.  A public hearing on the matter is set for July 18.



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