Ethan Pitt, Ripple Effect Program Director with Iowa Area Development Group, Justin Schneider with Coon Valley Telephone, Matt Funk with SEED, and Brenda Dudley with Midwest Partnership

Special to the Times Vedette

SEED (Stuart Enterprise for Economic Development) announced a $5,000 grant received through the Ripple Effect program made possible by matching contributions from Coon Valley Telco and Aureon, Coon Valley’s fiber technology partner. The grant will be used to develop a comprehensive master plan that outlines the feasibility, design, and estimated cost of a potential recreational center in Stuart. This award reflects SEED’s commitment to exploring quality of life opportunities for Stuart residents.

The master plan will include a space-needs study to determine the types and sizes of facilities required to meet the diverse needs of the community, as well as location possibilities, preliminary site layouts, floor plans, and an exterior visual representation of the building’s architectural design. The plan will provide rendering images depicting the proposed building’s exterior and interior spaces and an estimated cost for construction, aiding in future fundraising efforts.

An engineering firm will be hired with the grant funds to facilitate the planning process. However, the development of the conceptual master plan will be a collaborative effort that includes SEED, the City Council and community stakeholders. Public engagement opportunities will be provided throughout the process, ensuring the final plan reflects the desires and needs of the Stuart community.

“Thanks to the generous support of Coon Valley Telco and Aureon through the Ripple Effect grant, we anticipate a significant impact on our community’s economic development efforts.” Matt Funk, Stuart economic development director, said.

“We extend our sincere thanks to Coon Valley Telco and Aureon for their generous support through the Ripple Effect grant award. Thanks to their contribution, we can now move forward with the master plan to determine if a new recreation facility in Stuart is feasible. Their investment in our community is greatly appreciated.” Brenda Dudley, Midwest Partnership economic development director, said.

SEED expects to begin the conceptual master plan this spring, followed by further discussions and potential next steps for the project.