August 01, 2008 – Cedar Rapids, IA: Cedar Rapids Recovering From Flooding, by Christine Becker from National League of Cities
The Institute for Building Technology & Safety (IBTS), a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to emergency and disaster response, hazard mitigation, and building safety services, is helping Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in its recovery from the flooding that has plagued the upper Midwest.
Seven certified commercial building and electrical inspectors arrived in Cedar Rapids last week within 24 hours of receiving the city’s request for help in assessing the safety and habitability of buildings in the downtown area.
Four Engineers and Architects and Six zoning and permit technicians joined the IBTS response team in Cedar Rapids a few days later to assist in building condition assessments and work with city staff in carrying out the building permitting process including answering business owners’ questions about how to get up and running after the massive flooding.
IBTS worked closely with the International City-County Management Association (ICMA), one of its founding associations, in responding to the urgent request for help from city leaders in Cedar Rapids.
IBTS rapid response teams have an impressive track record of responding to urgent needs after natural disasters, including providing badly needed inspection services in the aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in the 11 most affected parishes in Louisiana. The Louisiana Department of Public Safety has called IBTS “the shining star among these providers.”