Progress made on First Avenue project

The contractor working on the First Avenue water and sewer project may be substantially done with the project by Oct. 19, an engineer overseeing the work told city council members last week.
If the concrete subcontractor can’t get to work on the project, which has been a hold up, general contractor H&W is prepared to hire someone else, said Shane Waterman with Clark Engineering.
All of the new pipes are primarily in the ground, he said. Some connections are still being worked on.
The plan was to disconnect a force main at Veterans and First, but Waterman said they are recommending just leaving it because it hasn’t caused any problems. It’s an old pipe that goes back behind the football field.
“The chance of someone encountering raw sewage is zero,” he said.
The city will need to hire a specialized contractor to dig two pits and install two line stops on a 10-inch pipe at a cost of about $17,860. City workers have tried to find the shut off but can’t locate it, Waterman said. The project is needed in order to tie in the new water main to the old pipe.
He suggested the city work on mapping how it can strategically shut down areas of town.
The contractor still is paying for liquidated damages for not completing the project on time. As of Sept. 21, H&W was being $1,650 a day for 36 days or $59,400. The amount has increased since that time.
The council also approved a payment of $365,132 to H&W for work completed.
In other business,
•The council voted to renew a garbage hauling contract with Eng Services. The term of the previous three-year contract ends Oct. 31 and can be extended for three additional years based on the original bid price and a fuel escalator.
Garbage services costs for residents won’t increase, said Jeff Pederson, city administrator.
•Council members approved naming the alley that divides the Spafford Square Development “Spafford Lane.” Residents of the association have said they would pay for the signage if it was approved.
The city owns and maintains the alley. Mayor Mark Bonrud said that this is a specialized designation because the property was formerly a school and that he doesn’t want a bunch of alleys named and marked with signage in town.
•Pederson told councilors that the dam study can’t be completed until water flow levels are normal, which hasn’t been possible with the heavy amounts of rain.

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