DES MOINES – The Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs has awarded $1 million for five Iowa Great Places projects in Adel, Redfield, Clinton, Guttenberg, Marion and Winterset.

The funding supports the development of new and existing community-based infrastructure projects that cultivate the unique and authentic qualities of neighborhoods, communities and regions in Iowa. The Iowa Great Places Citizen Advisory Board approved the grants during its meeting last month in Des Moines. Statewide, five grants totaling $1 million were awarded in response to 11 eligible applicants requesting nearly $2.9 million.

“Each of these projects plays a role in helping Iowans create culturally vibrant communities that attract and retain globally minded workers who put quality of life at the top of their priority list when they’re deciding where to live and work,” Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs Director Chris Kramer said. “We are proud to invest in Iowans and their communities through this program, and we’re especially pleased to help them make their visions for the future a reality.”

Created in 2005, the Iowa Great Places program provides designated communities with access to funding opportunities, professional development training, technical assistance opportunities, a network of vibrant communities and passionate leaders, and other state and local resources. Currently, the program includes 40 Iowa Great Places designated communities. Funding for the grant program is provided by the Iowa Legislature through the Rebuild Iowa Infrastructure Fund and requires a 1:1 match.

Local Iowa Great Places projects that were awarded grants during the current round of funding include:

Adel - Raccoon River Valley Trail (Designated Iowa Great Place)

Adel Partners Chamber of Commerce is the grant recipient for the project, titled Public Art and Cultural Corridor Continuation – Adel and Redfield. The project received $39,000 through the grant.

Funding will support the addition of two public art pieces in the towns of Adel and Redfield, plus artistic lighting on a railroad bridge in Adel to build upon the previous work to create a “Cultural Trail District” along the Raccoon River Valley Trail.