HR Green assists City of Waterloo in creation of teen center

28 February 2020 2 min. read
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Engineering and environmental consultancy HR Green has assisted the City of Waterloo, Iowa in the creation of a teen center operated by the Boys and Girls Club of the Cedar Valley. The project cost $3 million and centered around the redevelopment of two declining commercial properties in the city.

"This project is a training ground for our future leaders and workforce and space to prepare our teens for life after high school," James Lee III, CEO of the Boys and Girls Club of the Cedar Valley, said. "We will have caring adults present to support and encourage our kids. It will be our Teen Staff's job to show our members the myriad of opportunities available to be successful. The center will produce caring and responsible citizens to advance our community for the future. We are preparing Waterloo teens to become the next community leaders. The center also provides another asset to be used not just for our youth but for our neighbors and the broader community."

HR Green worked with city employees and officials to obtain a $400,000 grant that would allow the organizations to investigate the properties, which were potentially contaminated. An environmental site assessment led to the discovery of an underground storage tank and a 55-gallon drum, that were severely damaged, putting the project in jeopardy.

HR Green conducted groundwater and soil sampling, determining that contaminant levels were not above statewide standards, enabling the project to move forward.

Teen Center - Boys and Girls Club of Cedar Valley

The center held a grand opening on January 16. It features space for tutoring, computer and digital graphics skills development, music creation, college test preparation, counseling, homework assistance, and recreational space.

"The new Boys and Girls Teen Center accomplishes many positives for the City of Waterloo," Noel Anderson, community planning and development director for the City of Waterloo, said. "First, it works in partnership with the City of Waterloo, Walnut Historic Neighborhood Association, JSA Development, and Habitat for Humanity as another vital piece in the overall redevelopment and rehabilitation of the Walnut Neighborhood."

"Second, it shows the ongoing importance of the City's efforts to eliminate blight through the brownfield program and 657A State Code use. And last but not least, the overall impact of the Teen Center on the youth of the community."

HR Green was founded in 1913 and falls under the umbrella of the HR Green Family of Companies. It operates out of offices through the United States, working in areas and sectors including water, transportation, governmental services, land development, environmental, construction, and broadband.