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New grant opportunity to help small Iowa communities with abandoned commercial properties

DES MOINES-- Starting Aug. 1, Iowa communities with populations of 5,000 or smaller can apply for special funding to inspect abandoned commercial buildings.

The funds, from the DNR’s Derelict Building Grant Program, allow eligible communities to investigate the amount of asbestos present in a building and determine the physical characteristics and stability of these structures by completing structural engineering assessments.  

“If a building collapses and the presence of asbestos is unknown, it can increase the economic burden on the community,” said the DNR’s Scott Flagg. “In addition, a building’s appearance may not reveal the actual condition of the structure. Building assessments can assist communities determine how best to address an abandoned building.” 

The Derelict Building Grant Program provides small communities and rural counties financial assistance for abandoned commercial and public structures, which can improve the appearance of their streets, revitalize local economies and alleviate the environmental concerns these buildings can pose. Projects selected may apply for funding in 2017 for additional program-related tasks.

For more information and to obtain an application on the Derelict Building Grant Program, contact Scott Flagg at 515-725-8318 or Scott.Flagg@dnr.iowa.gov.

No applications will be accepted after 4 p.m. on Aug. 18.

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