Bettendorf Announces Major Milestones in Forest Grove Drive Reconstruction Project and Exciting Future for I-80 & Middle Road Corridor

The biggest Public Works project in the City of Bettendorf’s history is nearly complete. The Forest Grove Drive Reconstruction Project began in July 2022 and is now entering its final days with some major milestones:

Friday December 15th
On Friday, December 15th, Forest Grove Drive is expected to open east of the roundabout located at Forest Grove Drive and Middle Road (green line on map below), opening Forest Grove Drive in its entirety from Criswell Street to Utica Ridge Road.

Friday, December 22nd
On Friday, December 22nd, Middle Road is expected to open north of Forest Grove Drive along with Competition Drive located on either side of Middle Road (yellow area on map below). Competition Drive west of Middle Road includes access to Kwik Star, the TBK Bank Sports Complex and commercial developments in The Plex. Competition Drive east of Middle Road includes access to more future commercial developments and Iron Tee – a climate-controlled interactive golf and entertainment complex on track to open in late Spring 2024.

December 15th Forest Grove Drive Opening Map - Copy (2)

What Else to Expect in 2024
There are two main “entrances” into the City of Bettendorf – Interstate 74 and Interstate 80. In December 2021, our community celebrated the opening of the new I-74 Bridge. Now, two years later, the City is honoring that iconic arch by announcing the timeline of another arch at I-80 and Middle Road. This “Gateway Bridge” is not for motorists, however. Instead, it will allow people to safely walk, run, or bike over Middle Road.

Gateway Bridge Concept Design 1 - Copy (2)

“This connects the TBK Bank Sports Complex Corner with the Iron Tee Corner of Forest Grove Drive and Middle Road,” said Jeff Reiter, Assistant City Administrator and Economic Development Director. “As an added bonus, it serves as a connector in our regional trail system between Davenport and LeClaire and allows walkers, runners, and cyclists a spot to stop in this awesome tourism destination and take a well-deserved break in one of the many amenities offered in this growing area of our community.”

Gateway Bridge Concept Design 3 - Copy (2) Gateway Bridge Concept Design 4 - Copy (2) 

The “Gateway Bridge” was revealed in February 2022 as part of an announcement for the expansion of The Plex Corridor (To learn more, click here), which included the Forest Grove Drive Reconstruction Project. This was the next exciting step years in the making stemming from a goal of the Bettendorf City Council – to have a regional youth sports complex that was privately-owned.  

“Since opening in 2018, the TBK Bank Sports Complex has become a national footprint for youth sporting events,” said Decker Ploehn, City Administrator. “Not only that, it’s an economic catalyst. What’s been created in this area has far exceeded our expectations and we cannot be more excited for continued growth – including seeing the ‘Gateway Bridge” come to fruition.”

The “Gateway Bridge” is currently in the design phase, which is about 40% complete and expected to be finished in Summer 2024. Construction is expected to begin in Fall 2024. As the design phase progresses, the funding mechanism for this project is also taking shape. On December 5th, the Bettendorf City Council unanimously approved an amendment to the I-80 Urban Renewal Plan, which allows the City to increase its capacity to bond up to $11 million. To pay for the bonds, the City will use tax revenue created from the area where the “Gateway Bridge” will stand and support the I-80 and Middle Road Corridor.

“The City does not intend to raise taxes to pay for these bonds and we will continue to submit grants to pay for other parts of the project,” said Ploehn.

The “Gateway Bridge” also coincides with a major state project. The Iowa Department of Transportation plans to reconfigure the I-80 and Middle Road Interchange beginning in 2025 – an estimated $58 million investment.

“This investment is yet another example of the success we’re seeing in this area and the reason why we need to provide a grand entrance for visitors and residents to see how special Bettendorf and the Quad Cities are. We are excited to move forward,” said Reiter.

Gateway Bridge Concept Design 5 - Copy