End abutments are done for Crow River bridge work

July 21, 2008

By Lynda Jensen
Staff Writer

End abutments for the Crow River bridge are completed, with bridge work being on schedule, and other road work being on or ahead of schedule, according to a report given to the Delano City Council Tuesday.

“All in all, progress is good and continues in full force,” commented engineer Vince Vander Top.

As predicted, the work has shifted to the west side of the river.

The bridge should be done by mid-October if the weather cooperates, with a Nov. 15 contract completion date.

Council adds streetlights to Rockford Rd., Co. Rd. 30

Also as the result of council action, four streetlights are likely to be added on Rockford Ave. to Wright Co. Rd. 30 (the backage road).

The council decided to ask the Minnesota Department of Transportation to add the lighting following discussion of Highway 12 road work, which means that four lights will be added; one will replace an existing light already there.

Previously, the council discussed lighting on that stretch of road in June. The proposed locations would be as follows:

• Corner of Rockford Avenue and the backage road. This is at the northern end of the alignment.

• Immediately north of the Linden Avenue intersection with the backage road.

• Across from the new Foster Marine access to the backage road.

• A fourth light could be installed to replace the existing light at the intersection of the backage road with County Road 30.

The style of light would match the lights proposed along Highway 12, with these particular lights being 30 feet tall with downcast lighting.

The lights, which would be colored black, would be installed on the west side of the backage road. The head style enables the light to be tilted at a maximum 10 degree angle. This capability will facilitate tilting the lights toward the properties east of the backage road and eliminating any light directed west and north toward residential properties.

The total cost for the lights will be $14,716.

During the discussion, Mayor Joe McDonald asked about placement of a trail on the backage road, and whether it would be safe to do this, width-wise. Vander Top answered that the road would be wide enough counting the right of way and the trail feasible to install, if the council wished to do so.

It was generally hailed as a good idea, and the council decided to research this idea further.

Council hears request for private well in city limits

The council turned its attention to Charles and Linda Motzko, who requested permission to install a private well on their property, which is located just inside the city limits.

The couple own 4.5 acres of landscaping and gardens, which the city’s water supply can barely keep up with. The Motzkos’ water pressure is low to start with, due to the elevation and grade of their land. They noted that a number of times the water had to be run night and day, “24/7.”

The city ordinance currently prohibits any private wells, except for special circumstances granted by the council, although the council and Mayor McDonald listened attentively to the Motzkos’ request and asked several questions about the issue.

Hal Becker, the city’s utilities general manager, was unable to attend the meeting but forwarded objections to the well idea, saying it would set a bad precedent and that other issues might generate future problems.

If the council approved the well, it would likely contain several requirements that would need to be followed, McDonald noted.

It was decided to further discuss the issue, and also noted that the Utilities Commission would be meeting today (Monday).

Odds and ends

In other action, the council:

• renewed a 3 percent increase in the Delano Fire Relief Association pension fund, with the idea of making small step increases instead of playing catch up later in large amounts. The council carefully asked questions of Financial Director Brian Bloch about the future funding for the pensions before approving the increase, since they are based on investments.

“You do so much for our community – unselfishly,” McDonald told Fire Chief Bob VanLith.

• heard from a Wright County deputy that there has been sporadic vandalism from spray painting, but that a juvenile suspect has been identified.

Some windows at Stahlke were also broken and some wood has been stolen as well. The deputy also asked about whether golf carts could be used in the city limits and was told that he would be given a copy of this ordinance.

• noted that the Fourth of July event was a big success despite the inconveniences of road work.

“Overall, it was a fantastic celebration,” McDonald said. “It’s a wonderful slice of Americana.” The next meeting of the committee is Tuesday, July 29.

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