Cedar Valley Sportsplex to raise more local funding - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Cedar Valley Sportsplex to raise more local funding

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WATERLOO (KWWL) -

Organizers of a Sportsplex in Waterloo are working to overcome financial obstacles. After another setback this week, they are pushing forward with plans for a grand opening in 2013.

When the Cedar Valley Sportsplex designs were revealed in October 2010, Mayor Buck Clark said it's value can't be measured in dollars and cents.

"It's so hard to quantify today what this is gonna mean to the entire community, to the city of Waterloo, the Cedar Valley," he said.

But as we've learned over the past year, its price tag is a different story. Architects are estimating the main building and a leisure pool will cost $26 million. With a future addition of a competition pool, the grand total will top $30 million.

Already, the community has come forward with more than half that amount.

"We've raised over $17 million," said Rick Young, a local businessman and advocate of the project. "I don't think there's any project in Black Hawk County, privately, that has raised that much money."

The amount raised thus far is impressive. But Wednesday in Des Moines, Vision Iowa board members told organizers, they will have to come up with even more local funding if they want a grant from the state.  That's because a shrinking state budget left them with less money to give.

"We have to keep raising more. We know that. And we are," Young said.

Organizers are asking Vision Iowa for $3 million, but expect to receive even less than that.

Young believes, they can raise the money by their self-imposed deadline. He says the Cedar Valley Sportsplex is a necessary addition for a thriving, growing, downtown Waterloo.

"I just think it's something we need here. My kids live here, my grandkids live here. And I want to see them have a good future," he added.

The city does need to acquire a couple more properties. The hope is to begin the bidding process in Fall 2011.

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