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From ecology to transportation to diversity and jobs, Cedar Falls wants input on Resilience Plan
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From ecology to transportation to diversity and jobs, Cedar Falls wants input on Resilience Plan

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Cedar Falls Resilience Plan logo

Cedar Falls Resilience Plan logo

CEDAR FALLS — What if the next 500-year-flood is just around the corner? What if the next derecho wipes out the Cedar Valley instead of Cedar Rapids? And what if the coronavirus pandemic wreaks havoc on the city’s finances for the next few years?

Thinking about worst-case scenarios may be a scary proposition. But city staff wants residents to do just that to come up with long-term solutions to potential problems.

A series of virtual workshops in the coming days, as well as a survey online, will help guide the new Cedar Falls Resilience Plan. It was developed about a year ago after discussions between the city and the University of Northern Iowa about disaster preparation.

“This is a very communitywide effort to really prepare the city for a variety of events that may happen in the future,” said Amanda Huisman, communication specialist with the city. “This year we had the pandemic, the derecho — when you’re looking at things like that, we want to take the opportunity to put the city in the best possible situation that may arise.”

Thinking about a response now will help the city, businesses and residents plan for the future, said city planner Thom Weintraut. He envisions proposed solutions would be more operational, rather than needing changes to city code.

“This is not just for the city,” Weintraut said. “These topics and ideas could (help) businesses streamline and run more efficiently, or just to be able to get some resources that individuals and the community could use to combat something that may be taking place.”

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The topics are ecology, land and habitat; water, weather and urban flooding; energy, mobility and transportation; community cohesion and civic services; equity, diversity and well-being; and jobs, business and economy.

“It would benefit people to do all of them, but if it’s something they’re particularly passionate about, they can focus on that one,” Huisman said.

The Resilience Plan workshops will begin Tuesday, Oct. 20, and run through Oct. 29. Each will begin at noon and run for around 90 minutes, with participants able to ask questions of the consultant group. The workshops also will be recorded for later viewing.

Residents are also asked to fill out surveys on each topic that are available online through Oct. 30.

The results will be summarized in an online town hall meeting from 7 to 8 p.m. Nov. 10, and a draft plan will be prepared for public review in the spring. Weintraut envisions it as a comprehensive plan that can be tweaked as needed over the years, but will help the city move forward.

“I would hope everyone in the community has ideas on these topics,” Weintraut said.

Architectural drawings of the planned new Cedar Falls High School

This collection of conceptual drawings of the planned new Cedar Falls High School show how it might look from the exterior and inside the building. Also included in the collection is a site plan. The school, expected to open in the fall the 2024, will be located on 69.6 acres of land north of West 27th Street and west of PE Center Drive near the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls. 

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An architect's drawing shows a view of the planned Cedar Falls High School with a pool addition that is currently scheduled to be built later.

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The Cedar Falls High School site plan was presented to the Cedar Falls Planning and Zoning Commission on Wednesday.

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An architect's drawing showing the front of the planned new Cedar Falls High School.

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An architect's drawing showing the entryway and lobby of the planned new Cedar Falls High School.

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An architect's drawing of a classroom, or "learning studio," in the new Cedar Falls High School. 

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An architect's drawing of the back exterior wall of the commons area at the planned new Cedar Falls High School.

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An architect's drawing of a "co-learning studio" in the planned new Cedar Falls High School. These flexible breakout spaces will be outside of…

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A photo rendering from Invision Architecture in Waterloo shows a collaborative working space planned in the new Cedar Falls High School set to…

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An architect's drawing of the commons area at the planned new Cedar Falls High School.

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An architect's drawing of the gymnasium in the planned new Cedar Falls High School.

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An architect's drawing of the entryway to the "learning wing," or classroom area, of the planned new Cedar Falls High School.

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An architect's drawing of the main corridor at the planned new Cedar Falls High School.

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An architect's drawing of the office at the planned new Cedar Falls High School.

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An architect's drawing shows a view of a future pool planned for the new Cedar Falls High School.

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This rendering from Invision Architecture shows the planned front entrance of the new Cedar Falls High School building. 

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This rendering from Invision Architecture shows the planned lunchroom, now called a commons area, in the new Cedar Falls High School. 

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