LIFT WC announces inside work has begun on Elks Building and new Challenge Grant award

The LIFT WC Board has announced that, with the outside work completed on the historic Elks Building, they have moved inside and are beginning Phase 2 of the rehabilitation project.

“We are excited to announce we have begun Phase 2 of the rehabilitation project and this consists of new HVAC, electrical and plumbing as well as work on the front exterior staircase,” said Darcy Swon, LIFT WC President. “We have been busy working on firming up the total project budget, which has increased from our initial estimates due to the economy. We are now looking at a total project budget of around $2.5 million for Phase 2 and forward.”

LIFT WC has received just over $800,000 in charitable donations and awarded grants including $15,000 from the Webster City Hotel/Motel Tax Grant and $150,000 from the Iowa Catalyst Building Remediation Grant. This figure does not include the $880,000 received as a Community Development Block Grant that was used to complete Phase 1 which covered the outside renovations to the building.

LIFT WC announced another grant they have recently received. “We are very excited to share that the Enhance Hamilton County Foundation has awarded us a Challenge Grant in the amount of $150,000,” said Lindsay Henderson, LIFT WC Vice President. “This means that the next $150,000 raised in charitable gifts will be matched dollar-for-dollar. This is very important because now every gift, regardless of the size, is doubled.”

Donations can be sent to the Enhance Hamilton County Foundation (501 Bank Street, Webster City, IA 50595) with checks being made out to LIFT WC. Checks can also be dropped off at the EHCF office in the drop box located in the entry way. All donations are tax deductible and will receive a gift receipt in the mail.

“LIFT WC plans to maintain the building upon completion and utilize the top floor to hold a wide variety of public (live music, dinners, educational workshops, etc.) and private events (weddings, graduations, class reunions, etc.),” said Swon. “We also plan to partner with local businesses to provide them an opportunity to offer their services and products which will create an additional revenue stream for them.”

The main floor and basement will have space for lease for “social gathering” type business(es). Swon went on to say that the monies generated from the leases will cover building maintenance and expenses. The funds generated from the events held on the third floor will be put back into the community in various forms, including small business grants and to fund other community betterment projects.

“The Elks Building will create a ripple effect that will increase community engagement and betterment and generate a positive economic development impact for small businesses,” said Henderson.

The LIFT WC organization was formed in 2019 and is led by the following board members: Darcy Swon, President; Lindsay Henderson, Vice President; Zach Chizek, Treasurer; Shannon Swon, Secretary; John Hawkins and Jake Pulis.