Keokuk has started talking about developing its own multi-sport complex.
The discussions began with a request to upgrade Rees Park. Mayor Tom Marion says the idea is to prepare the park for softball games or practices.
“We will put the fencing back up and we will disc the infield,” says Marion. “We will also bring some clay sand and put it on the infield and fix the bleachers.”
The city council reached a consensus to proceed with the project, which could cost several thousand dollars.
Keokuk is ready to do something about the former Flowers by Daryl building at 707 Main Street.
Code Enforcement Officer Kathie Mahoney says a majority of the building’s exterior is in good shape, but she says the rear portion of the structure is basically gone.
The city has received one bid of just under $8,700 to repair the building.
Mayor Tom Marion says Keokuk does not want to see another vacant Main Street lot.
Time is of the essence when it comes to a multi-million dollar project at the Keokuk Municipal Airport.
The city council has awarded the contract for resurfacing the airport’s 5500 ft. runway to Shipley Contracting out of Burlington.
The company’s bid of just under $3.8 million came in roughly $1-million below original estimates. The city received three bids but did not consider one of them.
Keokuk could have a buyer for three pieces of prime, Main Street real estate.
The city shut down the Keokuk Saddle Club in 2004 to allow for the construction of the Hampton Inn along Main Street.
That project resulted in four additional, unsold lots. They have sat vacant since the hotel was completed, except for a large For Sale sign.
Mayor Tom Marion says the organization, Goodwill Industries, has approached the city through a local realtor about purchasing three of the lots.
Keokuk could make it easier for downtown properties to be developed.
Fire Chief Gabe Rose says city code requires sprinkler systems be added to a downtown building if it is renovated for mixed use.
Mixed use generally refers to commercial/retail business on the first floor and residential units on the upper level.
Rose is proposing a change that would provide an exemption to the sprinkler system requirement for certain buildings.