Residential growth spurs business growth in Marion

With more people choosing to live in Marion, there's a need for more schools, more restaurants, and new and improved amenities.
Published: Jul. 14, 2020 at 8:51 PM CDT
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MARION, Iowa (KCRG) - Our Town Marion welcomed roughly 1,000 new households in the past decade. With more people, there’s a need for more schools, more restaurants, and new and improved amenities.

”Really, you can drive around almost every corner of our community and you can see projects that have been recently completed or are just getting started,” Nick Glew, president of the Marion Economic Development Corp, or MEDCO, said.

That progress is the pride of Our Town Marion, which is making room for more people and businesses. You can see new buildings on the east side of town, at Squaw Creek Crossing, with new restaurants and more.

”We think later this year, we’ll start a new hotel project, there’s a new multi-family housing project out there,” Glew said. ”Some more national franchise locations are starting to come to our community, which I think is indicative of what we’ve grown to be as a community.”

”I think a lot of it is just the residential growth and starting to recognize Marion as a growing community and it’s great to see the businesses come alongside that growth,” adds Tom Treharne, the Community Development Director for Marion.

To the north, a new fire station will serve a growing population, as will a new YMCA, more than twice the size of the current location, set to open this winter. The Linn-Mar school district will open two new intermediate schools this year. Hazel Point and Boulder Peak will serve students in 5th and 6th grade. And the new Marion Library will be the biggest project in Uptown Marion, a part of town that’s changed a lot in recent years.

”What you see today is not what you saw 10 years ago and so it’s really exciting to see some of those early plans that we made in the early 2000′s really start to take shape,” Treharne said.

With all of these changes, there’s a balance in preserving a ‘small town’ feel.

”You have to remember your roots. You have to remember where the community came from. You have to remember what people love about Marion,” Glew said.

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