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Rock Island Receives Brownfield Grant for Columbia Park PDF Print E-mail
News/Features - City Shorts
Written by Joe Collins   
Tuesday, 19 May 2009 08:45

The City of Rock Island was awarded a $150,000 brownfield grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to complete environmental assessment of the future Columbia Park development on the site of a former International Harvester manufacturing plant. Rock Island was one of nine Illinois communities and coalitions to receive funding in the 2009 grant round. The Columbia Park Master Plan, adopted by the city in 2005, incorporates parks, recreation areas, and other amenities along the Sylvan Slough. The Columbia Park redevelopment will replace the 80-acre Quad City Industrial Center site (covered almost entirely with buildings, drives, and parking lots) with a mixed-use development featuring a linear parkway and major arterials with enhanced landscaping.

A project to strengthen local philanthropies has received national recognition for its impact on Illinois communities. Communityworks, a collaboration between Grand Victoria Foundation and 17 Illinois community foundations (including the Moline Community Foundation),was honored with the Critical Impact Award from the Council on Foundations at its annual meeting in Atlanta. From 2003 to 2008, Grand Victoria Foundation invested $12 million in Communityworks, which sought to strengthen Illinois community foundations by building endowments, supporting high-performing operations, and encouraging collaboration with local leaders around local priorities. The initiative was one of four winners of this year's Critical Impact Award from the Council on Foundations, based in the Washington, D.C. area.

Justin Grubbs, a senior at West High School in Davenport, will join high-school students from around the country to debate Social Security and Medicare reform at a leadership and debate camp in Oklahoma from July 12 to 17. The students will spend time with retired Army General Tommy Franks, learn from renowned leaders, and debate entitlement reform in a team format. "I Debate: Developing Leaders with General Tommy Franks" is hosted by the General Tommy Franks Leadership Institute & Museum, the National Center for Policy Analysis, and the Academy of Leadership & Liberty at Oklahoma Christian University. For more information on participating students, visit

On May 11, St. Ambrose University broke ground on an $11.5-million health-sciences education center, located on the campus of Genesis Medical Center on West Central Park in Davenport. The facility will house the academic programs in nursing, occupational therapy, and physical therapy.

Get Movin' is a new exercise program produced by WQPT and designed for and demonstrated by children six to 11 years old. More than 400 children auditioned for roles in the program, and 16 were chosen. Four fitness instructors from the Illinois and Iowa YMCAs will be the hosts of the exercise portion of the series. Four additional children were selected for cooking segments designed just for kids and led by Stacy Mitchell, co-host of WQPT's Recipe Re-Do. The series airs on Fridays at 4 p.m. For more information, visit

Riverside Theatre in Iowa City is hosting a celebration on June 6 from noon to 4 p.m. to honor the 10th year of its Shakespeare festival. The event will take place at Riverside Theatre (213 North Gilbert Street) and will feature prizes, refreshments, and a sneak peak at costume and set renderings for the upcoming festival. For more information, call (319)338-7672 or visit

Michael Weeks, author of the newly published book The Complete Civil War Road Trip Guide, will present a visual program of Civil War battlefields on June 20 at 2:30 p.m. at the Moline Public Library (3210 41st Street). His book includes all 384 principal battlefields listed by the Civil War Advisory Commission and lodging and other travel information. To register, visit the reference desk or call (309)736-5737.

In an effort to raise awareness of the history and lives of African Americans in Iowa, the Davenport Public Library and the African American Museum of Iowa have partnered to bring monthly cultural programming to the community. The next event will be held on Thursday, May 28, at 6 p.m., at the Main Street Library (321 Main Street) as University of Iowa alumnus Simon Roberts shares his story about being the first African American to claim a national collegiate wrestling title. In March 1957, Roberts won the 147-pound title at the NCAA championship. For more information about this program, visit For more information about the African American Museum of Iowa, visit

The City of Rock Island has completed a draft of its 2008-9 Consolidated Annual Performance & Evaluation Report (CAPER) reviewing the 33rd year of the Community Development Block Grant in the city. Comments will be accepted through June 19. A public hearing will be held at City Hall (1528 Third Avenue) on Wednesday, June 4, at 5:30 p.m. for citizen comment. The report can be downloaded here.

The St. Ambrose University Organizational Best Practices conference "Achieving Results Through Employee Engagement" scheduled for Wednesday, June 3, has been postponed. For more information, contact Allison Ambrose at (563)333-6155 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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