Davenport’s application for $20-million federal grant could build RiverVision

DAVENPORT --The City of Davenport plans to try for a $20-million federal BUILD Grant that could revitalize the riverfront and downtown streets.

Riverfront land near downtown Davenport offers a blank slate for ideas. If approved, a federal grant could go a long way to develop RiverVision.

"This would be an absolute game changer, not only for the riverfront, but for the downtown," said Alderman at Large Kyle Gripp, on Tuesday, June 12.

The much-discussed RiverVision ideas are back in sight. A large portion of the proposal ($14-million) would fund a riverfront park.

"I think the word is iconic that people like to use to make it really be that attractive spot along the riverfront that people want to go to and visit," said Parks and Recreation Director Scott Hock.

Reason enough for a Davenport advisory board to endorse the application on Tuesday. The city will submit it in about a month, but there's no telling how long the screening process will take.

"It's going to be a process to get there, but the end goal is going to be just amazing," said Hock.

Another big chunk of the proposal ($10-million) would improve downtown streets. Among other things, it would add two-way traffic to 3rd and 4th Streets, rebuild a 12-block stretch of Main Street and upgrade other downtown corridors for drivers and pedestrians.

With more people living downtown these days, it also includes establishing quiet zones for train traffic.

"This BUILD Grant will be a great way to leverage those federal dollars to get that world class riverfront we've been dreaming about for a long time," Ald. Gripp said.

After a lot of discussion and planning, the future could join two impressive features in Davenport.

"It's the downtown," Hock concluded.  "It's the riverfront. It's all connected together."