The upper story of a local building in Garner that has been vacant for nearly 50 years will soon be rejuvenated
and back into use. Lake Rentals, LLC (Alex Yohn, President) will be the grant recipient of a $500,000 grant for
rehabilitation of the upper story of 314 State Street in Garner into apartments. Funds will be provided from the
Community Development Block Grant Coronavirus Program administered by the Iowa Economic Development
Authority. The program is funded by the CARES Act legislation approved in 2020.
The momentum for this project stems from the need to provide safe and adequate supply of housing during and
after the coronavirus pandemic and improve a downtown building. Three of the apartments will be designated
for low to moderate income households, which are defined as having an income at or below 80% of the median
household income. For a two-person household in Hancock County, this currently translates into an income
limit of $47,500.
The total project cost is budgeted at $772,490, and Lake Rentals, LLC will fund all expenses beyond the
$500,000 in grant funding. Four apartments will be created, including three two-bedroom units and one
efficiency unit. The bid package and administrative paperwork are anticipated to be completed this winter with
a bid letting in the spring and construction next summer.
Adam Kofoed-City Administrator of Garner stated:
“When something as important as housing need can be accomplished with local partners it shows dedication,
partnerships and trust. This project is a testament of how by working together Hancock County can make things
happen.” said Jill Kramer-Hancock County Economic Development Director.
“This is the 5 th old downtown building I have been involved in to help rejuvenate Garner. Even as a kid I have
loved Garners downtown buildings. The Garner community is important to me and has been home of our
family business Yohn Co for over 75 years. I am vested and have personal reasons to see it succeed and excited
for this latest project.” Alex Yohn-President Lake Rentals, LLC
NIACOG staff was utilized to write the grant, and they will also provide grant administration throughout the
project. If you know of downtown building owner with an upper story that has been vacant for at least 5 years,
please have them contact the NIACOG office at 641-423-0491 to discuss the possibility of a similar project.