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5 bidders for stage one of Mason City multi-purpose arena

That is part of the River City Renaissance Project which would include a hotel, multi-purpose arena, conference center, museum and skywalk.

Posted: Jan. 10, 2019 8:27 PM
Updated: Jan. 11, 2019 6:52 AM

MASON CITY, Iowa- It won’t be long now before demolition inside the old JC Penny’s building begins as five potential construction companies have placed bids to do stage one of the multi-purpose arena project.
That is part of the River City Renaissance Project which would include a hotel, multi-purpose arena, conference center, museum and skywalk.
“We need to have something different,” said lifelong Mason City resident Don Caldwell.
Caldwell, who is in favor of the project, said he is ready for change.
“It should bring more people in,” he said. “I don’t know how they stay open the way it is now.”
Tuesday the city went through all five bids with the lowest coming from Charlson Excavating in Clear Lake.
“There’s good competition in the bids,” said City Administrator Aaron Burnett. “We’re happy we have this kind of interest.”
But the vetting process isn’t done just yet.
“We will go through more of a vetting process and make sure that the lowest bidder is somebody who can complete the project,” said Burnett.
While the project is moving much faster than in years past, Caldwell said the sooner the better.
“I think the only way to get Mason City bigger is for more places to work in the mall,” Caldwell said. “As long as they don’t do that we aren’t going to get much done.”
All five bids will be given to the city council at Tuesday’s Mason City City Council meeting. City staff said the lowest qualified bidder will be the one who gets the job.

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