Nevada city officials want to give the public, especially those who own property or have a business in the downtown area of Nevada, plenty of time to prepare.


In the summer of 2020, and quite possibly into 2021, Nevada will undergo a huge Central Business District Infrastructure improvements project (CBDI project for short).


The CBDI project area is along Sixth Street, from I to N Avenue, and along J and K Avenues and Lincolnway, from Fifth to Seventh streets.


On Monday, the City Council approved an amendment to the agreement about the project with HR Green, the engineering firm who handles the city’s engineering services.


Larry Stevens, who works as city engineer through HR Green, took a few minutes to talk about the impending project, which he said will be “monumental” for the city of Nevada.


The approximately $9 million project, he said, “has been a long time awaiting.”


The project will be more than just infrastucture reconstruction, though that’s the main emphasis of taking on the work — to reconstruct and replace the city’s aging water and sewer lines that lie underneath the streets and alleyways of the downtown area. The project will also include streetscaping, the need for replacement of the city’s traffic light or putting in a four-way stop at that corner, new downtown lighting and poles, new sidewalks … the entire gamut, from storefront to storefront and also the alleys that run behind businesses on the main two blocks of the downtown, south of Lincoln Highway.


“We will need to have a number of public meetings, the first being early this summer,” Stevens said, to be sure that people, especially those connected to the downtown area, are well aware of what is going to happen. Next summer, there will be a lot of preliminary planning, before the actual work happens in 2020.


“It’s going to be burdensome,” Stevens stated honestly. “Some buildings will have construction on three sides of them. It will impact their businesses, so we want people to know exactly what we’re getting into.”


Stevens anticipates a concept planning stage of this project should be complete by Thanksgiving time this year. “It’s going to be a long process (from the beginnings now to the completion of all construction),” he said, “but (the work being done is) going to impact folks for generations to come. We want it to be something people can be proud of.”


City Administrator Matt Mardesen said the biggest thing for the city is to start meeting with people on main street as soon as possible. “Because there will be changes with new water and sewer service that may come into their buildings,” where new connections need to be established for the updated services.


Stevens said those property owners in the main business district who have had ongoing problems with their water and sewer system will naturally welcome the major work that is going to take place, and he knows that there will be some who will dread it and wish it wasn’t happening.