- Associated Press - Monday, September 29, 2014

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa (AP) - Volunteers are making progress on restoring the historic, former Cedar Falls post office that once was destined for demolition.

In 2012, the city council voted to demolish the building, but the Cedar Falls Development Group prevented its razing after acquiring a 40-year lease for the city owned structure earlier this year, the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reported (https://bit.ly/1vptt6A ).

The building was open for viewing last week during the Upstairs Downtown tour, where people could see private residences, upper level office areas and renovation projects. Jan Andersen, with the Cedar Falls Development Group, estimated it was the first time the building had been open to the public in nearly a decade.

The building’s 4,100-square-foot upstairs is mostly open, with the floor space interrupted by a few structural columns and some offices. The group hired a construction company to knock down partition walls, which were additions to the old post office when it was used for city office space.

In its basement, the exposed brick walls are still waiting to be resealed. The original walnut hardwood floors in the postmaster’s office are visible under a film of plaster dust. Corners of the main corridor’s terrazzo floor, once covered with vinyl tiles, can be seen under layers of glue.

Volunteers have also spent hundreds of hours working to remove the mold inside, landscape the property’s front lawn and repaint the outside window casings.

“There are so many people that remember this place from when they were kids,” said Cedar Falls Development Group member Jim Newcomb. “It’s really a nifty building. It’s got good bones.”

Several people have already expressed interest in using the building, including a tenant who has proposed converting it into a boutique and wine bar. No lease agreements have been signed yet though, and the development group said it still has more work to do before anyone can move in.

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Information from: Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier, https://www.wcfcourier.com


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