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A grant has been awarded to rebuild the Madison County covered bridge that was destroyed by three teenage arsonists on April 15. According to the Des Moines Register, the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs told the Madison County Chamber of Commerce that it would receive $275,770 to rebuild the famous Cedar Covered Bridge in Winterset.
The grant is one of five presented as part of the Iowa Great Places program overseen by the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs’s Iowa Arts Council.
“We are pleased to partner with these Iowa Great Places as they continue to build and strengthen cultural vitality in their communities,” Iowa Arts Council administrator Matthew Harris said in a press release, according to the news agency. “These projects enhance quality of life and generate economic opportunities for their communities while celebrating their local character.”
The original bridge was built in 1883, but burned down in 2002, which was also determined to be arson. It cost $772,824 to build a replica of the 130-foot bridge, and additional expenses brought that total up to more than a $1 million before it reopened in 2004. According to the news agency, a press release from the Iowa Department of Cultural Affair states that the total cost for the rebuild project this time is $597,076.