Interview with Board Member Explains the Impact of FCED

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Forest City Economic Development
145 S. Clark Street
PO Box 306
Forest City, IA 50436
Office: (641) 585-5560

Interviewer: What do you see as the value that FCED provides to the community?

Board Member: I could point to ten or fifteen projects. Notably, one was the rail park development. Another is the Westown Apartments development, the building of the forty-seven-room motel. There are many projects initiated by FCED that are much needed in the community. I can’t even count them all over the time I’ve been involved on the board. So it’s pivotal, necessary, and these volunteers are working to better the community without any financial interest. They donate money to keep economic development working on projects. This volunteer organization has a tremendous impact on meeting the community’s challenges.

Interviewer: What’s a project that you’re particularly proud of working on during your time on the board?

Board Member: The rail park was huge, as you heard earlier. Now, the local people who bought the railroad after economic development saved the railroad spur are in negotiation with two bigger railroads to sell the company. That’s an example of economic development saving something that might be gone forever and now has tremendous value.

The career center is also significant. You don’t have to go to college to get a good-paying job. You can go to the career center for six months to a year or longer if you want to go further. It’s a huge development for the schools in our area because it’s close by and good for students.

Interviewer: Has FCED provided any assistance during your time at the radio station?

Board Member: Economic development helped find state funding for the rehab of a building into radio station studios, a $400,000 project. We wouldn’t be able to do it otherwise. It’s a huge addition to Main Street and a significant contribution to rebuilding the town.

Interviewer: What about the community itself do you take pride in?

Board Member: The welcoming attitude toward all people who want to come to our community. We have a lot of single parents, and economic development helped establish daycare centers, which is a huge contribution to the employee base for Forest City. It’s just so necessary and huge. Who takes on these kinds of projects? It’s a challenge, but it’s necessary to benefit the community.