Herald JournalHerald Journal, Oct. 20, 2003

Montrose approves orderly annexation with Woodland

By Dave Cox

Final adjustments to the orderly annexation agreement between the City of Montrose and Woodland Township highlighted last Monday's council meeting.

The agreement is pending township approval, which did not yet take place during the township meeting Tuesday, according to Woodland Township Clerk Gloria Janikula. The township is reviewing the document yet.

The agreement pertains to land owned by Roger Gerardy south of Highway 12, and west of Wright County Road 110.

Township representatives attended the meeting to discuss changes to the agreement, including concerns about maintenance of township roads in relation to development.

The agreement was revised to address these concerns, allowing for the city to collect escrow as a part of the development agreement for road maintenance.

If developers drive on township roads using shortcuts, the developer will pay to fix them, and will also be required to provide a three-year guarantee for the work.

Sidewalk issue

The council revisited a sidewalk issue that was discussed at the last meeting. Nelson inquired about the status of the situation.

City Administrator Barb Swanson stated that the motion at the Sept. 29 meeting had been to direct the city engineer to look into the sidewalk and boulevard issue to see if anything could be done.

The area in question was on the east side of Wright County Road 12 (Buffalo Avenue South) from Second Street to Third Street. The road was straightened in this area, causing a slight adjustment to the sidewalk.

Swanson stated that the city engineer had reviewed the situation and determined that no change could be made.

Council Member Dave Nordschow suggested that the engineer's response may have been based on convenience rather than whether it was possible to make any changes.

The council discussed a motion to reduce the boulevard by one foot and move the sidewalk closer to the street.

Knodel opposed the motion, expressing concern over possible additional costs and delays that might result from making this change so late in the project.

Director of Public Works Del Haag pointed out that, as planned, the sidewalk had been kept well within the right of way. He urged the council to be aware that there may be engineering issues that might be affected by the change, such as an increase in the slope from the sidewalk to the curb.

The motion was passed 4-1, with Nordschow opposed.

New plant will be online soon

The council discussed the new treatment plant project. Haag was asked if the new plant would be up and running by the end of the year, and if not, would the current system be adequate for another winter.

Haag explained the remaining steps needed before the plant will become operational. He said that the timing would be very close in terms of getting things ready prior to freezing weather.

The city should be able to get by with the current system if necessary, he said.

He noted that he has already seen improvement, and that flows have already been reduced to a more manageable level as a result of the construction project. Installing the new sewer line has reduced the number of extra pipes and consequently, the extra water that had been running into the system.

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