Area News

Aug. 17, 2018

Work on Co. Rd. 10 falls slightly behind schedule in Waconia

The section of County State Aid Highway 10/Waconia Parkway that has been closed most of the summer won’t be open to traffic until early September, the Waconia Patriot reported.

That road was shut down in early June, and traffic has been routed through downtown Waconia since then, as part of the County Road 10 corridor realignment project just west of the high school.

The road was originally scheduled to reopen at the end of August, but the project is about a week behind schedule, primarily due to weather delays, according to project engineer Andrew Engel.

The $8.9 million package of improvements involves both construction of new roadway and reconstruction of Waconia Parkway South from the curve west of Pond Lane to CSAH 32. Plus, the installation of lighted roundabouts at Community Drive and where Waconia Parkway will connect with new CSAH 10.

Annandale man dies in head-on crash in Wright Co.

The name of the 74-year-old Annandale man who died after a head-on crash with a dump truck in Wright County Tuesday afternoon has been released, KDUZ reported.

Roland Johnson died at the scene, according to the Minnesota State Patrol.

The Patrol said Johnson was driving southbound on Highway 24 at County Road 39 West in Corrina Township when his van veered into the wrong lane and hit the dump truck head-on.

The driver of the dump truck, 36-year-old Corey Paulson, also from Annandale, suffered non-life threatening injuries.

The crash happened just after 1:30 p.m.

Monticello fire station plan includes ambulance – for now

The estimated cost of a new Monticello fire station has increased by about $600,000, due, in part, to a proposed increase in the size of the project, which now includes a second level and an extra garage bay that would make the facility a home for a satellite location for the CentraCare ambulance service, the Monticello Times reported.

The Monticello City Council has approved a concept plan for a facility with an estimated cost of $5.5 million.

Plans could change, however, because CentraCare has not committed to establishing a satellite base in Monticello.

McLeod County OKs permit for Winsted Twp. solar farm

The McLeod County Board approve a conditional use permit for a community solar garden on private property in Winsted Township, the McLeod County Chronicle reported.

The City of Lester Prairie and Winsted Township both expressed concerns and recommended denial of the permit, but the county board approved it with conditions.

The City of Lester Prairie is opposed to the project because the property is within the city’s long-term growth area, as defined by the city’s comprehensive plan. The city views growth toward Highway 7 as an economic asset. The property on which the proposed project is located is adjacent to another solar garden.

Meeker Co. approves shooting range, despite protests

A newly-approved rifle and trapshooting range in Meeker County has sparked controversy, the Litchfield Independent Review reported.

At its regular meeting Aug. 7, the Meeker County Board approved a conditional use permit for the Eden Valley Sportsman’s Club to establish a shooting range in Manannah Township.

The shooting range on 380th Street, south of Eden Valley, will feature a 300-yard rifle range, a 50-yard handgun range, and two storage buildings. Property owner Steven Schmitt said the new range, situated on a 31-acre parcel of land, will also provide a field for club members to trap shoot.

At the Aug. 7 meeting, a group of residents of the area where the range is to be located voiced strong opposition to the shooting range, emphasizing their concerns about safety, damage to wildlife and the environment, and the possible lowering of adjacent property value.

Glencoe moves forward with treatment plant project

Glencoe City Council opted to bypass a peer review of its $20 million to $23 million wastewater treatment plant project, and instead decided to continue on its schedule, the McLeod County Chronicle reported.

The city will call for plans and specifications Aug. 20, open bids Oct. 17, award bids in November, and begin construction next spring.

Last month, the council asked an Iowa engineering firm to give the city a second opinion on the cost of the Glencoe plans, compared to construction of similar plants in Iowa for half the cost.

Litchfield Fire Department to update its air tanks

The Litchfield Fire Department will upgrade its portable air tank system before the end of the year, the Litchfield Independent Review reported.

The Litchfield City Council Aug. 6 directed Fire Chief Greg Gilbertson to begin the process of upgrading the department’s 15- to 17-year-old self-contained breathing apparatus air tanks and compressor to a new system with higher compression and better technology.

Gilbertson indicated that the total cost, expected to be about $180,000 to $190,000, cannot be done gradually over several years due to the higher pressure of the new system and its incompatibility with the old tanks and masks, which have reached the end of their 15-year life span.

New pastor joins Annandale United Methodist Church

Annandale has a new pastor in town, the Annandale Advocate reported.

The Rev. Paul Baker became the new pastor of Annandale United Methodist Church July 1.

In addition to accepting the position in Annandale, Baker was also appointed pastor of the Montrose United Methodist Church. He preaches at the 8:30 a.m. service in Annandale, and the 10:30 a.m. service in Montrose.

Baker grew up in Williston, ND, where his family was very involved in the local United Methodist Church.

Monticello parks commission member honored with bench

A bench has been installed in Monticello’s East Bridge Park to honor Monticello resident Larry Nolan, the Monticello Times reported.

Nolan was a charter member of the Monticello Parks and Recreation Commission, and served for more than two decades before retiring in 2017. He continues to work as a park volunteer.

“I’m very excited about the leadership Larry has shown to the City of Monticello over the years,” Monticello Parks Superintendent Tom Pawelk said.