The Vision Iowa Board approved awards to projects in the cities of Coralville and Grinnell Wednesday. Board chair Regenia Bailey says a $1.6 million grant will help officials in Coralville complete a new 518-seat performing arts center. The theater will be built as part of the Plaza on 5th facility.

"I’m pretty familiar with that area. It’s nice and it’s really close to the library," Bailey said. "They’ve done some coordination with parking." The entire project in Coralville will cost more than $10-million.

The arts center will house a community theatre group and also provide a performance space for area schools. The grant to the city of Grinnell is worth $100,000 and will help finance a $5.5-million aquatic center.

Bailey says the facility will include amenities that should attract everyone from toddlers to senior citizens. The project will include eight 25-meter lap lanes, three slides, a water walk, concessions, a new bathhouse, shade structures and new playground equipment. Bailey, who was named the new Vision Iowa Board chair last week, is the Mayor of Iowa City.