FAIRMONT - Rising material costs should not have a great impact on street improvements slated for this year, according to Troy Nemmers, Fairmont's public works director.
"I'm sure gas costs will," Nemmers said.
On Monday, the City Council approved plans and specifications for reconstruction of Albion Avenue from Northwest Belle Vue Road to Lair Road. Advertising for bids was also approved, with the bid opening set for 10 a.m. June 13. The council will approve the qualifying low bid at its meeting that evening.
The project is estimated at $1.4-1.5 million and will include tearing out the existing street, replacing underground infrastructure and rebuilding the road at a narrower width to make room for a bike path.
Construction will start around the beginning of July, with one lane kept open for local traffic. The work is expected to be complete by October, the contractor's deadline.
Also at Monday's meeting, Nemmers spoke regarding National Public Works Week, which begins on Sunday in Fairmont.
"This is really to increase community awareness," he said, noting that most people don't think about public works except when something goes wrong.
Nemmers encouraged residents to take the time to think about public works' many responsibilities and how smoothly operations run on a day-to-day basis. In Fairmont, there are 93 miles of streets; nearly 500 acres of parks; 142 miles of overhead and underground electric lines; and 84 miles of watermain. At the wastewater plant, 1.2 million gallons are treated every day.
Supervisors for Fairmont public works departments were congratulated by the Council for a job well done. Rande Isenberg is the parks and streets supervisor; Butch Hybbert supervises the water and wastewater treatment plants; and Marty Meixell is the electric superintendent.
In other business, the council:
o Set a hearing for 5:30 p.m. June 13 to consider a petition to vacate an alley on the VFW property.
o Approved a joint powers agreement with the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension for Fairmont's police department to participate in a grant program with the St. Paul police department and the Minnesota Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.