KWWL Building to Undergo Major Renovation
The company says the announcement stems from an exhaustive review conducted by the company over the past year to assess the facilities and the feasibility of renovation or relocation to another site. It was determined that the present and future needs of the company could be satisfied in the current location with this extensive, multi-million dollar two-phased rehabilitation and modernization program. The building is a four-story structure comprising 55,000 square feet and is considered a historic landmark of downtown Waterloo.
Phase one plans will include restoration of the building’s exterior, including the first-floor glass façade. Concurrently, the existing facilities of the television station will be brought up to contemporary broadcasting requirements. These plans call for first- and second-floor interior renovation.
Phase Two of the project will involve renovation of the building’s third and fourth floors. The exact details of the Phase Two renovation are still in the planning stage.
The building, originally called the Overland Hanson Building, was built in 1914 and was a car dealership noted for its four floors of automobiles and service. The building still contains the oversized freight elevator used for transporting automobiles from floor to floor. Later, the building was known as the Insurance Building before becoming the KWWL Building in 1958.
Quincy is seeking federal and state historic designation for the property along with local support from the city of Waterloo. The company will begin the project upon successful completion of the historic tax credit application.
“KWWL is a Waterloo institution and the decision to remain in our building and in the city of Waterloo is important for the city and for us,” said KWWL VP-GM Jim McKernan. “KWWL covers a 21-county area encompassing several major metro areas along with many rural and agricultural communities. The fact that our home base is Waterloo, when the region’s other television stations are located somewhere else is an asset for our hometown.”
“In this day and age when one’s loyalty to their community often is a forgotten trait, KWWL’s commitment to Waterloo is greatly appreciated,” Waterloo Mayor Buck Clark said. “Waterloo and KWWL are synonymous, and the former Overland Hanson Building is an iconic structure in our city. We look forward to assisting KWWL and Quincy in completing this major project which complements new developments on the Franklin Street corridor and downtown.”