“Great gift to the community” History Center to purchase former Cedar Rapids funeral home as its new location

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By Cindy Hadish/Save CR Heritage CEDAR RAPIDS — A mansion once home to prominent residents in the city’s history, which later served as a place of comfort for grieving families, will usher in a new era with its own role … Continue reading

Settlement of New Buffalo, Iowa, soon to disappear

The former Buffalo United Methodist Church, 4009 Blairs Ferry Rd. NE, will become the location for a new Goodyear Tire store. (photo/Cindy Hadish)

The former Buffalo United Methodist Church, 4009 Blairs Ferry Rd. NE, will become the location for a new Goodyear Tire store in Cedar Rapids. (photo/Cindy Hadish)

Final remnants of an early Iowa community will soon be relegated to the past.

A new Goodyear Tire store is planned at the location of the former Buffalo United Methodist Church, 4009 Blairs Ferry Rd. NE, said Josh Collingwood, manager of  Downtown Tire, 402 Second Ave. SE.

The site was part of the New Buffalo settlement that originated in the 1850s, about the same time that Cedar Rapids was getting its start, said Cedar Rapids Historian Mark Stoffer Hunter. Continue reading

Cedar Rapids core neighborhoods still hurting from flash floods in June; new B Avenue Historic District among areas affected

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CEDAR RAPIDS – Flash-flooding that filled their basement with more than 9 feet of water is still all too real for Jim and Cheri Kirk, but getting others to understand what happened has proven remarkably unreal. “I’d like the city … Continue reading

Summit tours shine spotlight on historic buildings, bustling Main Street districts and more

This apartment above Mount Vernon Insurance is one of three upper-story remodels on the self-guided walking tour of Main Street Mount Vernon during the Preserve Iowa Summit. (photo/Main Street Mount Vernon)

This apartment above Mount Vernon Insurance is one of three upper-story remodels on the self-guided walking tour of Main Street Mount Vernon during the Preserve Iowa Summit. (photo/Main Street Mount Vernon)

CEDAR RAPIDS – Repurposed historic buildings, award-winning restoration work, chic upper-level apartments and other architectural gems will be highlighted in eight tours during the Preserve Iowa Summit.

Bus and walking tours will take participants through downtown Cedar Rapids, to Main Street districts in Czech Village/New Bohemia, Marion, Mount Vernon and more. Continue reading

Cedar Rapids residents invited to join others at Preserve Iowa Summit

The complex restoration of the Paramount Theatre, 123 3rd Ave. SE, required extensive research and analysis to identify the materials and techniques used to create the original elements. A team of experts was brought in to examine and restore the building’s historic features. (photo courtesy of Ryan Companies)

The complex restoration of the Paramount Theatre, 123 3rd Ave. SE, required extensive research and analysis to identify the materials and techniques used to create the original elements. A team of experts was brought in to examine and restore the building’s historic features. (photo courtesy of Ryan Companies)

CEDAR RAPIDS — Conference-goers from around the state and beyond will see firsthand the great survival and flood recovery story of Cedar Rapids as they converge on the city for the Preserve Iowa Summit, but local residents are invited to further their knowledge of the area’s history, as well.

“There’s just an incredible amount of information that people will be able to get by coming to the conference,” said Mark Stoffer Hunter, historian at the Carl & Mary Koehler History Center in Cedar Rapids. “They’ll find out how preservation increases the value of the entire metropolitan area and why historic preservation is so critical to the health of the entire Cedar Rapids community.”

The Preserve Iowa Summit is the only statewide annual conference for professionals and volunteers involved in historic preservation and historic commercial district revitalization in Iowa. The summit, which runs Aug. 21-23, will highlight places such as the Paramount Theatre and U.S. Bank Building, both of which are among the successful comeback stories of the epic flood of 2008, along with other sites outside of downtown. Continue reading

Riverfront buildings in Cedar Rapids move toward redevelopment

The riverfront Knutson Building, one of the city's oldest commercial structures, will be discussed at an informational meeting, July 29, 2014, at Cedar Rapids City Hall. (photo/Cindy Hadish)

The riverfront Knutson Building, one of the city’s oldest commercial structures, will be discussed at an informational meeting, July 29, 2014, at Cedar Rapids City Hall. (photo/Cindy Hadish)

NOTE: A meeting for developers interested in learning more about  the Knutson Building is scheduled for 3 p.m. Tuesday, July 29, in the Collins Conference Room in the lower level of Cedar Rapids City Hall, 101 First St. SE.

CEDAR RAPIDS — Two riverfront buildings with combined centuries of history could both see new futures.

The Cedar Rapids City Council this week agreed to accept bids on the Knutson Building, 525 H St. SW (now known as Valor Way.) Meanwhile, the Linn County Board of Supervisors is leaning in the same direction for the neighboring Mott Building. Continue reading

Building updates: new Lincoln Elementary owner schedules open house; two city-owned structures could go back on demo list and Knutson Building may be offered for redevelopment

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CEDAR RAPIDS – The oldest school in Cedar Rapids is in the midst of its transformation into a place of worship, while two city-owned commercial buildings are in limbo and a third could soon be on the market for a … Continue reading

Lion Bridge Brewing Company finds perfect fit in historic Czech Village grocery store

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Note: Save Cedar Rapids Heritage chose Lion Bridge Brewing Company as the site of its first Preservation Mixer, scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Thursday, June 26, 2014. Anyone with an interest in helping to save the city’s historic buildings is invited … Continue reading

Hach Building demolition ends story for Cedar Rapids-area family and New Bo neighborhood

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CEDAR RAPIDS – Robert Hach Jr. shook his head in disbelief. More than a century of his family’s history knocked down within minutes; wiped clean within hours. “It’s one thing to talk about it,” he said of the demolition of … Continue reading

Razing of New Bohemia building to leave hole in historic district; demolition looms as developer interest increases

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CEDAR RAPIDS — When New Bohemia’s Hach Building is bulldozed in coming days, it won’t be due to a lack of interest in restoring the historic structure. An investors group made a cash offer to owners Diane and Leon “Tunnie” … Continue reading