LANCASTER, Minn., Jul 25, 2012 -- USDA Rural Development State Director Colleen Landkamer visited Lancaster today to kick off construction on a new community center financed in part by a $415,000 USDA loan.
“USDA funds are helping to build essential community facilities such as this one throughout rural America,” Landkamer said. “Investing in rural infrastructure and facilities creates immediate jobs during the construction phase. Buildings such as community centers, hospitals and day cares also create a more livable and sustainable rural Minnesota.”
Lancaster’s new 4,860 square-foot community center will feature a large multipurpose room for events and meetings, accessible bathrooms and a commercial kitchen. In addition to USDA, additional funders for the project include the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development and the City of Lancaster.
Construction on the new community center is underway and should be completed by Jan. 1, 2013.
“The community center project is the result of a multi-year effort to restore facilities that were lost with the closing of the old American Legion Hall,” said Lancaster mayor Gary Rice. “We will again be able to host events that the community is well-known for and that have been sorely missed.”
Funding for the new community center and city hall improvements comes from Rural Development’s community facilities programs. Since 2009, Rural Development has invested in over 120 community facilities projects that have benefited about one million rural Minnesotans. Investments have built or improved hospitals, nursing homes, fire halls, day cares, emergency response vehicles and non-profit or government buildings.
In addition to essential community facilities, Rural Development has programs to invest in housing, water and sewer systems, businesses, renewable energy and high-speed Internet. For more information on Rural Development programs, visit www.rurdev.usda.gov/mn, or call the local office in Thief River Falls at (218) 681-2843, ext. 4.