More than $3.3 million in federal money has been awarded to a pair of housing projects in the Cedar Valley to help the region recover housing lost during the flooding of 2008.

The Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) recently announced that Waterloo and Cedar Falls were among 16 cities across Iowa receiving Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) awards totaling over $51 million.

Two separate housing projects in the Cedar Valley are getting the funding. In Waterloo, $3 million was awarded to Grand Investments, LLC, for the development of a 68-unit apartment building and mixed-use commercial structure on the site of the former Grand Hotel downtown. In Cedar falls, the Black Hawk Hotel is receiving $335,311 to build two affordable apartment units on the building's fourth floor.

The grants were awarded based on three factors: potential impact to each community, the benefit to low-and-moderate-income individuals, and the commitment of the developer and local resources to move the project forward in a timely manner. IEDA received 77 applications from communities for the funds, totaling more than $173.3 million in funding requests.

“A major part of our work here at IEDA is making sure we have strong communities where people want to live,” said Debi Durham, director of the IEDA. “Administering this disaster recovery funding to help Iowa’s cities and towns rebuild is vital to the economic success of our state.”

The nearly $52 million in CDBG funds will be used to pay for 21 new multi-family residential construction projects across the state. The city of Cedar Rapids got over one-third of the money, with six different housing projects receiving $15.6 million.