Winsted-Lester Prairie Journal, May 10, 1999

Winsted too late for seal coating, but water projects planned

By Luis Puga

Winsted City Council was notified Tuesday that the window of opportunity for the seal coating project has passed for this year.

That was the determination of RCM/SEH Engineer Tom Homme. He said that seal coating should be done between May 15 to August 15 so that the summer heat can keep the aggregate material spread on the road soft.

However, since preparations for the seal coating have yet to be completed, the time frame will not be met.

Nevertheless, the city has a number of projects it will be taking on, including curb and gutter repairs across the city as discussed at a previous meeting.

The focus of Homme's presentation was, however, a water extension project. The purpose of the project is to increase water pressure for fire protection around the city.

The proposed project was split into a number of areas. Essentially, the city will increase the diameter of pipes to larger diameters to accommodate more water.

The first part would increase a line from the water tower due east up Third Street to Lewis Avenue from six inches in diameter to 12 inches. Estimated cost is $37,280.

The second part of the project would increase a four-inch pipe on Third Street to six inches from Baker Avenue to Albert Avenue. The cost would be $365,000.

The third part of the project would increase a four-inch main to six inches on Baker Avenue. The cost will be $134,000.

There was also proposed work to be done on Andy Avenue from Third to Second Street that would increase a four-inch main to 12 inches. Estimated cost would be $68,160.

There would also be a new 12-inch line to connect Albert and Linden Avenues. However, an easement would have to be obtained since the line would run through the public school and the Adult Training and Habilitation Center property. The cost of both those improvements would be $65,380.

On some sections of the projects, Homme noted that the majority of the cost is for the removal and replacement of the bituminous road surface. Homme said that the estimates were conservative and that if the city proceeds in the near future, cost could be kept low.

Council members also inquired whether all the projects were top priority. Homme said that the work on Andy Avenue is not important, and that the work on Baker Avenue could also wait. The council opted not to do those sections of the work.

Some concern was voiced about getting easements, but Homme informed the council that the right of eminent domain could be invoked.

Homme also recommended waiting on the project to fix a hump at the intersection at Main Avenue and McLeod Co. Rd. 1. He said that the west side of the intersection could be particularly cumbersome.

City Administrator Aaron Reeves said he would consult the county on this issue.

Council member Jeff Albers asked that the council look into getting a loan from a private lender for both the curb and gutter work, and the water extension work. If not, both projects will likely go through a bonding project, with the curb and gutter repair perhaps being assessed to home owners.

The city is also looking at other engineers. Reeves said after Homme's had left that the city has been having problems with RCM/SEH's service and that is the reason some projects have been on hold. As of now, the city is looking to spread its business around.

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