FOCUS AREA: ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

Progressing Forward

The Mid-America Center Entertainment District has been a focal point of our economic development efforts for the the past several years as we seek to bring life to an area with so much potential for Council Bluffs. Following the opening of the Iowa West Field House in 2017, the Courtyard by Marriott held a ribbon cutting in 2018. A IWF grant for signage has increased visibility for area businesses while the new Iowa West Sports Plex (coming in spring of 2020) will continue to attract more patrons and create a true destination for families.

Iowa West Field House Signage
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On behalf of the City of Council Bluffs, I would like to express gratitude to the Iowa West Foundation for demonstrating a strong commitment toward the vitality of the Mid-America Entertainment District. Visitors and residents alike frequent the district for a variety of reasons that range from entertainment opportunities to national conferences to youth athletics. The activities of these visitors are supported with several high-quality hotel, dining, and shopping options all within walking distance. Thanks to the financial support of Iowa West, the Mid-America Entertainment District is rapidly becoming a widely-known regional attraction with a bright future.

MATT WALSH
Mayor of Council Bluffs

Iowa West Field House

After an impressive first year in operation, the Iowa West Field House and operating partner Omaha Sports Academy exceeded expectations in year two. Community teams utilized more than 3,000 hours of free court time in 2018, which allows organizations like COBRA to keep their costs low. Notably, 400,000 people passed through the Iowa West Field House doors in 2018. Many of those patrons also needed a place to stay while they were here, so events at the field house resulted in nearly 2,444 hotel stays, a 30 percent increase from 2017.

Signage

In 2018, the Iowa West Foundation awarded $500,000 to the City of Council Bluffs to increase the visibility of the MAC District with better signage. With the addition of The Courtyard by Marriott, the continued success of the Field House, the recent opening of a brewery, and the interest of restauranteurs, the area is poised for greater growth.

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