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Black Hawk College and WIU Sign Agreement PDF Print E-mail
City Shorts
Written by Joe Collins   
Tuesday, 17 March 2009 08:50

The new "2+2" agreement between Black Hawk College and Western Illinois University will allow students enrolled in engineering, nursing, and liberal-arts-and-sciences degree programs to complete courses at both schools simultaneously. Students who receive financial aid can save up to 25 percent over four years as they earn a bachelor's degree. Studies have shown that community-college students who simultaneously take university courses have a 15- to 20-percent higher rate of success. For more information, call the Western Illinois University Quad Cities campus at (309)762-9481 or Black Hawk College at (309)796-5100.

 
The Can Can: Great River Brewery Debuts Its Beers, but Bottles Aren’t on Tap PDF Print E-mail
Feature Stories
Written by Jeff Ignatius   
Wednesday, 11 March 2009 12:33

Great River Brewery's Roller Dam Red

If you ask brewmaster Paul Krutzfeldt about bottling his beer, prepare to be dismissed.

"Speak of that no more," he said in the "brewer's lounge" of the new Great River Brewery, near the foot of the Arsenal bridge at 332 East Second Street in Davenport.

It's not that Krutzfeldt doesn't want his brews available in stores or bar coolers. It's just that he's a fan of the can.

"Cans are where it's at," he explained. "You have less oxygen tolerances, so the beer won't go bad. No light gets in. And you have a lot more accessibility to take them places - boating, camping. They're more easily recyclable."

Brewmaster Paul Krutzfeldt

He later cites the slogan of the Minnesota-based Surly brewery: "Beer for a glass, from a can."

This is the summary of what Krutzfeldt said is a trend in the suds industry: good beer being delivered in a container that has historically been the marker of bad beer.

He said he's not concerned about the association of cans with bland, watery, mass-produced beer. "What good beer have you had the opportunity to buy in cans?" he asked.

But the can is the wave of the future because of the protection it offers and its portability, Krutzfeldt said: "Cans are becoming king."

Although he said that he expects cans to eventually represent the bulk of his business, for the time being he's filling kegs.

 
Video: New Urban Neighborhood Grant Brings Focus to Campus Town Strategy PDF Print E-mail
Local News
Written by Todd McGreevy   
Tuesday, 10 March 2009 23:08


Deadline for New Iowa Urban Neighborhood District Designation Brings Focus to the Campus to Campus Plan in Central Davenport

The city's news release stated that the Campus to Campus Plan is an "effort to continue the revitalization of the corridor between St. Ambrose University and Palmer College of Chiropractic."

The news release continued: "Representatives from various businesses and institutions within the area have been invited to begin the process by first defining the project area and sharing initial thoughts about how stronger connections can be created. Invited participants include the anchoring institutions of St. Ambrose University and Palmer College of Chiropractic, Davenport Schools, [and] businesses and organizations of the Hilltop area. Wider public participation will be sought once the project’s parameters are further defined through the input gathered at this initial meeting."

Several dozen people including business owners, city staff, and aldermen met from 4 to 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 5, at J.B. Young Junior High School Cafeteria, 1702 Main Street in Davenport.



What emerged at the meeting was the city's application for a Main Street Iowa designation as an Urban Neighborhood District Program (UNDP) was due in three weeks, and some decisions on project boundaries needed to be made.

The UNDP provides for technical assistance from the state and funding assistance for a full-time project director for three years. The literature provided at the meeting stated that there could be up to four urban neighborhoods accepted into the program in 2009. The program fully adopts the four-point focus of "The Main Street Approach": Organization, Promotion, Design, and Business Improvement.

A paid program director selected by the community is paid for by the Iowa Main Street program, within the Iowa Downtown Resource Center and administered by the Community Development Division of the Iowa Department of Economic Development.

Everyone needs deadlines though, right? And many of these groups have been around for a while; it's time they got coordinated, and this might be the catalyst to make some real progress between three major stakeholders: St. Ambrose, The Hilltop Association, and Palmer College, as well as the several public and private schools within the discussed areas.

The program director would live in the area and help plan and implement the Campus to Campus Plan in conjunction with existing revitalization and beautification entities such as the Edmond Gaines group and the Hilltop Association.

What was at stake were the geographic boundaries of the "Urban Neighborhood." St. Ambrose was the north anchor and Palmer was the southeast anchor, with many schools in between, as well as the Hilltop Association on Harrison Street just north of Central High School.

After breaking everyone up into smaller groups with color-coded maps of the central city, staff were working toward consensus on a geographic area from the stakeholders. The discussion included whether residential neighborhoods were included in these designations. Pam Miner said that it might be necessary to remove residential from these plans, depending on the way the grant is given.

Third Ward Alderman Bill Boom advocated a two-tiered approach, with a contingency for a residential component. The Hilltop Association was identified as a potential source for some matching funding for a full-time project director.

The Main Street application is due April 1. There is a presentation to the state on April 28. Funding announcements will happen between May 18 and 22. The one-sheet issued by the city states that the Next Campus Town Strategy Meeting would be the week of May 25.

Pam Miner, City of Davenport Planning & Economic Development Director
"It's not a pot of money they are going to throw at us. It's technical assistance and more resources as far as help. The community is putting in their efforts either in cash or by donating an office space, computer, or telephone. Those kind of things count. The Edmund Gaines project that is already organized to do some lighting -- that can be somehow be creatively put in there as well."

Matt Flynn, City of Davenport Planning Senior Manager
"When you have organizations in place, there are a multitude of different programs that look [and ask], 'Well, where is the capacity to move forward?' I think it will give the Hilltop an advantage."

Ron Franz, Hilltop Association and Property Owner
"When I sat down, I listened to what was said, and it was strategic gateway and 90,000 vehicles per day. If there's 90,000 vehicles every day over there, I'm going to be excited.

"The next thing I wrote was Urban Main Street designation. To keep focused when I sat down in here, that's what was told to me. So I just want to argue a bit ... we're getting too loud and going to miss our focus if we don't keep to what was told a strategic gateway. I've seen plans for a long time. I'd like to see something happen. A little narrower focus would probably make it happen."

Bruce Berger, Development Senior Manager
"Regardless of the grant, I think, if all of you are in favor of these things, this probably needs to happen anyway. It's a lot easier if you have a staff person, and this thing can bring it together. But I think the Hilltop and each organization here has been saying,'Tthis is the kind of thing we need to be doing to get everyone moving forward in a direction.' Our suggestion would be regardless if the money comes through or not, let's keep this momentum going -- keeping the lines of communication going and discussing the improvements and existing ideas and how we can best get them implemented."

 
Davenport Voter Turnout Barely Tops 20 Percent PDF Print E-mail
City Shorts
Written by Joe Collins   
Tuesday, 10 March 2009 13:54

Of the 70,312 registered voters in Davenport, only 15,961 (22.7 percent) voted in the March 3 election for Ward 2 alderman and the citywide Local Option Sales Tax/Davenport Promise referendum. Of those who voted on the referendum, 6,235 (39.1 percent) voted yes, and 9,717 (60.9 percent) voted no. For more information on the election, visit ScottCountyIowa.com.

 
Video: Davenport Promise Referendum Fails PDF Print E-mail
Local News
Written by Todd McGreevy   
Wednesday, 04 March 2009 11:40



The Davenport Promise Referendum was defeated by voters 61% to 39% at the polls, Tuesday March 3, 2009.

The Promise program was modeled after the pilot program started in Kalamazoo, MI. Organizers wished to reallcoate 30% of the Local Option Sales Tax (LOST) from the capital improvements fund to a new scholarship fund as an economic incentive for families to move to Davenport. The fund would be used to pay for up to $20K in college tuition for students that lived in Davenport and went to high-school in Davenport 9-12 grades.

The program in Kalamzoo was funded by private donations. The Davenport Promise, as proposed, would have been funded by a portion of the LOST.



Opponents of the Davenport Promise rallied around a new PAC formed by Mark Nelson, called Opt4Better. Opt4Better produced detailed financial analysis refuting the proponents proposed benefits. Opt4Better hosted several news conferences, launched a website www.nomorepromises.com, produced a slide show, recorded presentations, and engaged in a Quad City Times sponsored debate. The over arching theme of Opt4Better's counter campaign was that the proponents over estimated the benefits and underestimated the risks to taxpayers.

The Opt4Better volunteers gathered at downtown Dvenport's Front Street Brewery to watch the election returns. KWQC's Erika Cervantes interviewed Mark Nelson live for the 10 o'clock news cycle.

 


 
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