Cedar Rapids plans to use infrastructure bill dollars for flood mitigation and new 8th Avenue bridge

Published: Nov. 22, 2021 at 8:11 PM CST
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - The Infrastructure Bill, which President Joe Biden was signed into law last week, will bring Iowa Billions of Federal Dollars. And the city of Cedar Rapids is aiming to grab its fair share to speed up flood projects and build a new 8th Avenue Bridge.

The bill gives Iowa $3.4 billion to repair highways, $482 million to repair bridges, $638 Million to improve water infrastructure, $300 million for public transportation,$120 million to upgrade airports and at least $100 million to expand broadband in the state.

Mayor Brad Hart said it is too early for the city of Cedar Rapids to know it’s share of those dollars, as of Friday. He said the city plans to assign somebody to oversee those funding opportunities, so nothing gets missed.

Hart said one of the projects the city of Cedar Rapids will prioritize is a new 8th Avenue Bridge, which would be built higher to avoid floodwaters. He said it’s too old to just replace.

“It makes no sense to repair to spend anymore repairing that bridge,” Hart said. “It’s way more than 80 years old.”

During the Flood of ‘08, the only way to cross over from either the east or west side of the city was Interstate-380. Plus, the 8th Avenue Bridge carries traffic going out to Mount Vernon Road.

Tiffany O’Donnell or Amara Andrews will replace Brad Hart as Mayor. But those plans are unlikely to change since the mayoral position in Cedar Rapids is only one vote in a council. Plus, both talked about the importance of flood mitigation and bridges at a forum last week.

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