Repairs Planned for Iowa Train Depot Damaged in Derecho

January 8, 2021

Officials in Marion, Iowa are set to approve a plan to repair the city’s historic train depot that was heavily damaged in last summer’s devastating derecho.

The Marion City Council received a motion this week from the city’s Parks and Recreation department to approve a contract for the repairs, The Gazette in Cedar Rapids reported. The council is expected to approve the contract at Thursday’s formal session.

The depot was built in 1892 and moved to City Square Park in 1990. The structure’s northside roof was smashed by a fallen tree during the Aug. 10 derecho, which brought winds of more than 100 mph to eastern Iowa and damaged many buildings and trees in a multi-state region and killed three people in Iowa.

The project, which includes repairs to the roof, some alterations like removing shutters from the building’s windows and other improvement, are estimated to cost nearly $72,500. The total cost will be covered by insurance, officials said.

The work is expected to be completed no later than June 15, according to the contract.

City Parks and Recreation Interim Director Seth Staashelm said Point Builders of Cedar Rapids will be awarded the contract and that the city also is working with Martin Gardner Architecture to ensure the repairs don’t compromise any of the structure’s cultural or historic significance.

“It is important to us and the community to maintain the historic integrity of this community asset,” Staashelm said.

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