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Downtown project rolls along

Phase Two of the Osakis Downtown Improvement Project 2016 began a day late, on Tuesday, May 2, because of a May Day snowstorm which dumped several inches of snow on the city.

The city's engineer, Sheila Krohse, reported on the work to be completed at the Monday, May 1 regular Osakis City Council meeting.

Finishing of the project begins with installing the concrete intersections at Central Avenue and Main Street, the concrete crosswalk on the north side of the intersection of Main Street and First Avenue West by the Post Office, and the crosswalk on the north side of the Nokomis Street-Central Avenue intersection.

Krohse pointed out that once poured, the concrete will need a week or more to cure. Thus Central Avenue from Nokomis Street to Main Street, and the intersection of Central Avenue and Main Street will be closed for 10 days during construction and concrete curing time.

After that time period, the streets will be reopened, and the contractors will be back in town to complete the concrete crosswalks on the west and east sides of the intersection of Main Street and First Avenue West, by the Post Office.

Krohse assured the council that the new sidewalks that are cracked will be removed and replaced.

Once the above work is completed, Krohse said the final layer of bituminous surfacing on all the streets, and the final striping will be completed. The date has not been set for this work.

She also told the council that the walk through had been completed, and the punch list of things to be addressed was given to the contractor, C&L, a couple weeks before.

Claims for damage caused by construction from O'Town Tavern and True Value Hardware were paid by C & L.

A force main will be replaced near the Central Lakes Trail bridge, and Krohse is working with MnDOT on this phase.

Warranties on the street lighting have been extended, including three years on the poles, and five years on the light fixtures because of installation issues.

2017 Downtown Project

With the completion of the 2016 project in progress, work is also beginning on the 2017 Street and Utility Improvement Project.

Jeanna Barnes appeared before the City Council in regard to the status of her sewer hookup. At a previous meeting, the council voted to approve going around Barnes' property because the city did not need to get her easement. She contested the vote, claiming one of the councilmen voted in spite of a conflict of interest.

Barnes told the council she had bought her property two years ago, and was not informed at that time that her sewer had been hooked into somebody else's property with no easement. That work was done 20 years ago, the council noted, and at that time none of the property owners were assessed for the project.

Krohse reported the usual cost to the property owner is 30 percent of the main, and 100 percent of the service. Barnes' service does not need to be replaced, it just needs to be hooked up to the new pipe.

Barnes asked that the city share in the cost of hooking her up to the Lake Street sewer system. Cost is estimated at $1,350 for service, and $4,000 for the main.

The council first voted whether to split the cost with Barnes, and the motion failed for lack of a majority on a 2-2 vote. Councilman Randy Anderson was absent. The council then voted on a motion to reconsider the question when there is a full council present. That, too, failed on a 2-2 vote.

The City Council approved payment of $10,043 to Bolton and Menk for work up to March 17. Total paid to Bolton and Menk to date is $277,900 on the project, which is considered 57 percent complete. The engineer's estimated bill was not to exceed $485,000.

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