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IEDA awards $25.4 million in credits to Iowa historic preservation projects

March 30, 2023

For more information, contact:
Staci Hupp Ballard, Iowa Economic Development Authority
Phone: 515.348.6245

IEDA awards $25.4 million in credits to Iowa historic preservation projects

March 30, 2023 (Des Moines) – The Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) announced $25.4 million in awards to offer new life to 15 buildings through restoration efforts that preserve historic attributes. The awards were made through the Historic Preservation Tax Credit program.

“The revitalization projects create distinctive spaces with historic charm that also support the needs of Iowa’s communities to attract people to visit, live and work,” said Debi Durham, executive director of IEDA and the Iowa Finance Authority.

IEDA received 18 applications requesting $35 million in tax credits, far above the $25.4 million available for this round of awards. The Historic Preservation Tax Credit program provides a state income tax credit to projects that rehabilitate historic buildings while maintaining the character-defining features that enhance neighborhoods and communities. Projects are scored based on readiness, financing and local support and participation.

The awarded projects will enhance historic buildings across the state. A glimpse into a few planned renovations provide insight into the creative ideas that were brought forward to meet each community’s needs:

  • Joens Hardware/Merwyn Apartments in Jefferson: The ground level, previously a hardware store, will transform into a restaurant space, which will attract additional foot traffic to the downtown area and will benefit proximal businesses. Six apartments on the second floor will be rehabilitated for affordable housing.
  • Churchill Drug Company building in Burlington: Once occupying the largest wholesale drug company in the Midwest, the warehouse and office building has been refurbished to provide 48 housing units with commercial space on the ground floor.
  • Val Air Ballroom in West Des Moines: The historic building will be restored and modernized with plans to continue its use as a unique mid-sized entertainment venue that can accommodate national performing acts.
  • Hopkins building in Marshalltown: After enduring the damaging impacts of a tornado in 2018 and a derecho in 2020, the building will be repaired and updated to accommodate new housing units on the upper levels and commercial space on the ground level.

Large project applications for the next round will be due September 15, 2023, with more than $20 million available for awards.

The Historic Preservation Tax Credit program is administered by IEDA in partnership with the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs’ State Historic Preservation Office. To learn more, contact Richard Bell at or visit

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