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1+ year after tornado, UAW hotel reopens in Ottawa

United Auto Workers cut the ribbon to a new hotel Friday afternoon at its Pat Greathouse Education Center in Ottawa, replacing the one heavily damaged in last February’s tornado.

Demolition of the old hotel at the UAW Center, 1000 E. Center St., Ottawa, started last summer. The entire roof was blown off in the Feb. 28, 2017, tornado.

The new, two-story hotel has 50 rooms, an increase from 30. The center is used for UAW conferences as well as those for other labor organizations.áThe center draws people from all over the Midwest.

“It means a lot to us to rebuild,” said Ron McInroy, director of UAW Region 4. “The history here goes back to the 1940s when it was a place where all different races could get together. ... The community has been great to us.”

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