A popular attraction in eastern Iowa that was heavily damaged by flooding nearly four years ago is almost ready for visitors again. Construction crews are in the final phases of restoring the National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library in Cedar Rapids.
The building was lifted and moved to higher ground one year ago. Since then, crews have increased the size of the building to make it about three times bigger than the original structure. Museum marketing director Diana Baculis says everyone involved is thrilled to see the progress.
“Having all of this here, all of the wonderful facilities, the gorgeous wood doors, the glass, the lighting…the wonderful opportunities that people will have to see the history, the culture and heritage of the Czechs and Slovaks,” Baculis said. Crews are currently working out the details on the geothermal systems and solar panels on the roof.
A grand opening celebration is scheduled over two days on July 14 and 15. More than $25 million was raised during a capital campaign to pay for the project. Various state grants totaling nearly $13 million were also awarded to the museum and library.
By Jill Kasperie, KCRG-TV, Cedar Rapids