Iowa Wholesale building work expected to begin in fall

Even though renovation work has yet to begin as originally scheduled on the Iowa Wholesale building at 201 E. Main St., work on the project is still going on behind the scenes.

The Marshalltown City Council received an update on the project at its meeting Monday night.

Michelle Spohnheimer, director of Housing and Community Development, said there has been a delay in the start of the work to transform the building to low-income housing for seniors. They now expect construction to begin in September.

“It has taken us a little longer, but it’s definitely still moving,” Spohnheimer said.

The developers are going through a process of getting grant approval and still have a gap in funding of $160,000.

“This isn’t going to prevent the project from occurring,” Spohnheimer said.

Spohnheimer expects the Iowa Wholesale building work to be completed within a year of when it begins. She said this project, along with the current Tallcorn Towers renovation across the street, will make for a “real exciting corner” in downtown.

In another agenda item, City Administrator Randy Wetmore requested additional salary money of one hour a day as he handles the oversight of the city engineer’s office.

Wetmore estimated he would be paid an additional $12,000 over the course of 10 months as he leads the department as they wait for a current staff member to take get licensed to take over for the retiring Lynn Couch.

Prior to the council approval of the request, Wetmore seemed irritated by several questions from the council on why this money is needed to cover for a staff member.

“I tell you what,” Wetmore said. “If this is going to be a big deal, just forget it.”

The council voted 4-2 to approve the item, which also will see other staff members of the engineer’s office get additional money for duties on an interim basis.

The next regular meeting of the council will be at 5:30 p.m. on Aug. 12 .