An informational meeting was held Monday, July 8, to give community members a chance to voice opinions and concerns about the 2013 streets, sewer and water main improvements project.

Approximately 25 community members attended the meeting held in the council chambers in City Hall to see what kind of impact the improvements would have on their neighborhoods. Representatives from the city and HR Green were on hand to explain the various aspects of the project and answer questions.

Shawn Cole, building and zoning official, said the improvements are part of the city’s capital improvement projects they do every three years. The last major street improvement project took place along K Avenue in 2010.

This time around, the city has identified the following areas that will be improved:

-C Avenue South between Eighth Street and 11th Street

-Valley View Circle from C Avenue South to the cul-de-sac

-Third Street Place from E Avenue to G Avenue

The improvements include removing existing pavement and replacing it with 7-inch Portland cement concrete (PCC) pavement, and reconstructing both the sanitary sewer and storm sewer systems.

Also included with the planned improvements are the following:

-installing a 16-inch water main from the south water tower at Eighth Street and E Avenue south to C Avenue, C Avenue East to 11th Street, then south to D Avenue

-replacement of 4-inch and 6-inch water main connections with 12-inch connections on N Avenue at Second Street and Sixth Street

The plan is to complete the improvements one block at a time. While each block is being worked on, residents on the block under construction will have to park their vehicles on a nearby street. A concern HR Green has with this situation is along C Avenue South between 10th Street and 11th Street. Residents cannot park along 11th Street, which may prove an inconvenience for some residents who live on the 11th Street side and will have to park far from their house.

One community member who attended the meeting asked if the contractor could split that block up into two and repair one half at a time. Jeremy Huntsman, project manager for HR Green, said this would extend the project’s length. Project coordinators are talking with Burke Corporation to see if residents can park in the lot Burke owns along 11th Street while construction is taking place along that block.

"We want to minimize the time that any of you are inconvenienced," City Engineer Larry Stevens told the attending community members.

The project is being funded by general obligation (GO) bonds and the water, storm sewer and sanitary sewer funds. No costs are expected to be incurred by property owners and homeowners as a result of the improvements.

As the contractor is working on the storm sewer lines, residents whose sump pump lines extend into the right-of-way will be connected to the new lines. Nothing will be done with residents’ sump pumps that do not extend into the right-of-way. Current city code states those sump pumps will have to be connected to the storm sewer line before the homeowners can sell the properties, at the owners’ expense.

Moving forward, HR Green and the city will continue to work on preliminary plans for the project. Huntsman said there will be another public meeting, possibly in mid-August, to once again go over the project. Bids are anticipated to be taken this fall, with construction to begin next spring. Huntsman said there may be some work done on water mains this fall, but no concrete work will take place in case the area receives an early snowfall, preventing new concrete from being laid.

Community members with questions or concerns regarding the 2013 streets, sewer and water main improvements project may contact Shawn Cole by calling 515-382-5466, Mike Neal, public works director, by calling 515-382-2621, or Larry Stevens or Jeremy Huntsman by calling 515-278-2913.