Woodbury Seeks $1.5 Million Grant for Bielenberg Expansion Project

The city expects to find out about the DEED grant in August.

The city of Woodbury has applied for a $1.5 million grant from the state’s Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) for the expansion project.

The city won’t likely find out if it will be awarded the grant until August, according to Communications Coordinator Jason Egerstrom.

If awarded, the funds would be used for “sustainability enhancements,” according to a Woodbury Bulletin story. The bonding request would pay for a geothermal heating and cooling system and solar-power equipment to reduce electricity and natural gas use at the sports center, the report says.

Woodbury is looking to replace the aging dome at the sports center with a permanent structure. The $15.5 million project is expected to begin next spring.

Meanwhile, the Bielenberg Sports Center Expansion Task Force recently held its final meeting, Mayor Mary Giuliani Stephens told Patch. The group looked at the latest designs and will likely make recommendations to the Woodbury City Council next week, she said.

The plans look “excellent,” Stephens said.

The city was among 90 applicants for DEED’s Capital Projects Grant Program. More than $288 million was requested. Only $47.5 million is available.

“We were impressed by the volume and quality of the projects submitted for capital project grants,” DEED Commissioner Mark Phillips said in a statement. “In the next several weeks, we will evaluate the applications closely and make a decision on which projects are selected. It’s going to take time, given the huge response to the program.”

Funding recipients will be selected based on such criteria as number of full-time jobs created or retained, increase in the local tax base, ability to attract private investment, health and safety benefits, and evidence of a strong return on investment and cost-benefit ratio, according to a DEED release.


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