'Fantastic' construction year yields good results in MP
By BROOKS TAYLOR
Mt. Pleasant News
With the outdoor construction season possibly in its final weeks, summer and fall projects in Mt. Pleasant are ahead of schedule and winding down.
That’s what Jack Hedgecock, general manager of Mt. Pleasant Municipal Utilities, and Jim Warner of Warner Engineering Associates, Inc., told the Mt. Pleasant City Council during its regular meeting Wednesday night.
“It has been a great construction season,” Hedgecock remarked. “Things are going very well in the park. We are working very closely with the concrete contractors and when the park is done, it will be a fantastic addition to the community.”
Hedgecock said it is hoped that the lights are erected in the park soon. He also said that the street lights for Grand Avenue will arrive in late November and it is anticipated that they will be placed soon thereafter.
Warner said the Grand Avenue project for all intents and purposes is finished. “It is pretty much finished. We are waiting for the grass to grow and we should have the signals back in operation in a couple of weeks.”
When the signals are finished, the lights will cycle through green, yellow and red instead of the red flashing lights now.
Parking stalls will be paved Monday on the square project, Warner added. “We hope to be out of the square at the end of October, which is fantastic,” he stated.
After the updates, the council turned its attention to next summer’s large-scale project — the reconstruction of North Iris Street from Washington Street to Winfield Avenue.
Council members approved an amended engineering services agreement with Warner Engineering Associates, Inc. for the project. Amendments were needed to the agreement because the design of the street has been changed from overlay to a complete tear out and rebuild into an urban street. The street will include curb-and-gutter and a trail on the west side.
“When we first applied (for a grant) four or five year ago, we were going with an overlay,” explained City Administrator Brent Schleisman. “However, now we will have an urban street with sewer work included.”
“I think the trail will be a good safety feature,” added Mayor Steve Brimhall, “because some people walk to work in that area.”
What the redesign means in engineering costs is an additional $130,000. Warner Engineering will be paid $315,000 for its work on the project.
Chuck Allen was awarded the one-year lease of farm ground at the airport. Allen bid $285 an acre to farm the approximately 70 acres next year. The city received three bids ranging from $182 an acre to Allen’s high bid.
The council approved annexation of two parcels of land into the city.
Some 37 acres of land owned by Thornton LLC and 4.7 acres of adjacent land owned by the city was annexed. Thornton’s land is immediately north of Winfield Avenue on the north side of Grand Avenue. The city’s land is on the west side of Grand Avenue. Both parcels of land are zoned agricultural residential reserve.
City-owned land, formerly the old Highway 218 right-of-way from Winfield Avenue north to the interchange was also annexed. The council also passed the first reading of an ordinance rezoning the land from agricultural to a general retail and service commercial district.
The aforementioned land is immediately north of James Avenue and west of North Grand Avenue and large enough to be a buildable lot.
Finally, the council:
• Approved the preliminary/final plat for the BC subdivision at 907 E. Washington Street (former Access Energy building), owned by Karl Braun and Brad Holtkamp. The building will house a pair of businesses with the front portion being occupied by Brad Holtkamp Automotive Inc., a vehicle repair business.
• Set a public hearing for Wednesday, Oct. 23, at 7 p.m. on the proposed application for a $600,000 community development block grant (CDBG) for the Jay Street sewer project. This is the second time the city is applying for the grant, it applied last year and did not receive the grant.
• Accepted the Two Rivers Bank alley project.
Council members meet again in regular session Wednesday, Oct. 23, at 7 p.m. at City Hall.