The Vision Iowa Board awarded an $88,000 grant to the historic-renovation project of the Historic Osceola Depot and Visitors Center.
The restoration project includes renovations to the interior of the historic depot with upgrades to utilities and mechanical systems, interior renovations to the welcome and waiting areas, offices and restrooms, paving the parking lot and improving the lighting, landscaping and sidewalks around the building.
Ann Diehl, commission chairperson of Osceola Historic Preservation Commission, said getting the grant took a lot of work.
“We’re very thrilled with it and … I was very pleased with the negotiations,” Ann Diehl said.
The total project cost is $1.43 million.
Acquiring funding for the project is almost complete, however, there are state historic tax credits pending.
Osceola Mayor Fred Diehl said approximately $20,000 in private donations were given to the project.
The city of Osceola contributed $150,000: Clarke County Supervisors, $25,000: Clarke County Development Corporation, $100,000 and Lakeside Hotel and Casino, $10,000.
Federal funds contributed totaled $911,924 with $161,924 added by Iowa Department of Transportation in May.
Items of interest
Fred Diehl said there are many new things the public might be interested in with the project.
There will be a lottery raffle to win a round-trip train ticket for two people to anywhere in Colorado that Burlington Northern Santa Fe serves. The winning ticket is for a sleeper car on the train.
“It’s been donated by Amtrak. So, that’s definite,” Fred Diehl said. “It will happen, it’s just a matter of when.”
Prints of the depot are also being sold. A small print costs $45 and large one is $90.
There is a print on display at White’s Woodworking.
The preservation architect chosen for the project is Douglas Steinmetz, AIA. Steinmetz is the same architect who did the exterior renovation of the depot.
Fred Diehl said Steinmetz was ideal because he’s done all of the drawings, engineering and plans for the parking lot.
“According to the DOT, their schedule pretty much gives us the final bids February 20,” Fred Diehl said. “I think we’re a month ahead of that. I think in January we’ll probably be able to bid for the whole thing.”