By Lynda Jensen
DASSEL, MN To the relief of those who have bounced and trundled over the Third Street railroad crossing in Dassel, the schedule for its repair is moving closer, as the City of Dassel sorts through pending road work.
More than a dozen bids were received Thursday for water main upgrades, which will affect a large section of Third Street and portions of Pacific.
The Dassel City Council will review and award the bid at its meeting tonight (Monday).
The forecast of city engineer Chuck DeWolf also came true, when he projected that contractors would be hungry for work.
“We had 16 bidders on the project,” commented Administrator Myles McGrath. The bids ranged from $485,091 to a low bid of $334,126. The engineer’s estimate on the project was $475,000, he added.
The work will affect Third Street from Highway 12 to Simons Avenue, just short of the industrial park.
Included in the work will be problematic sections of Pacific Avenue that have been known to cause issues for residents living there.
Portions of Pacific feature 4-inch pipes, which are undersized. A new 8-inch water main will be installed. Work will extend from Pacific to Sellards, and from Third St. to Second Street.
Previously, DeWolf noted that the city qualified for a 10 percent base grant. The whole project will amount to about $475,000, not counting the railroad crossing work. Ten percent of this will be the base grant, with the rest being a low interest loan.
Previously, Mayor Mike Scanlon observed that this money could cover the cost of fixing the railroad crossing, for which the BNSF Railroad is only willing to pay for 10 percent, and the city the remaining 90 percent.
Trains will be moving faster, too
The Dassel City Council received notice from Burlington Northern Railway Company recently that its trains will begin to move faster, as well. Currently, trains move through at about 10 to 40 mph. This will increase to 60 to 79 mph for freight trains and to 80 to 89 mph for passenger trains.
In November, Meeker County commissioners were given notice by Burlington Northern Santa Fe railroad that trains through Grove City would increase their track speed to 60 mph, from 40 mph.