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Blue Earth preps to build

August 6, 2013
Jenn Brookens - Staff Writer , Fairmont Sentinel

BLUE EARTH - Blue Earth City Council has approved an architect for a new public works shop to be built next year.

Jamie Holland, Blue Earth's public works director, gave the council a timeline extending from when it was determined a new building is needed right up to Monday night's vote approving CBS Squared of Chippewa Falls, Wis., as architect.

Holland pointed out that a federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration inspection in 2011 revealed workspace and safety issues at the current shop, an early 1970s pole barn-type building. The roof has been repaired three times and needs work again.

CBS Squared, along with two other contractors considered by the city, encourages a pre-stress concrete building to replace the current structure. While the cost is 5 percent to 10 percent more, the building will last for 80-plus years with little to no maintenance. Steel buildings only last 35 to 40 years and need significant maintenance in later years.

"The pole barn building also leaves too many limitations," Holland said.

The council approved hiring CBS Squared for $55,435, based on a $600,000 project. Holland said the company will give a presentation to the city in the fall, and likely start putting out bid requests in early 2014.

In other business Monday, the council received an update on current street projects. City Engineer Wes Brown reported that water mains are mostly complete, while work on the 11th Street area is expected to begin later this week. He also said the Seventh Street roundabout project area is behind schedule, with the other two expected to be finished by year's end.

When asked if any tentative end dates are set, Brown and City Administrator Kathy Bailey said the information they are receiving from the state Department of Transportation and the contractors is "very vague."

Concerns also were voiced about students who will be walking to school in the construction area beginning next month.

"These kids aren't bused; they ride their bikes," said council member Dan Brod. "Will they have a safe place to walk? The way it is right now, that is not safe."

Bailey said this point will be brought up to the contractors and MnDOT during the next update.BLUE EARTH - Blue Earth City Council has approved an architect for a new public works shop to be built next year.

Jamie Holland, Blue Earth's public works director, gave the council a timeline extending from when it was determined a new building is needed right up to Monday night's vote approving CBS Squared of Chippewa Falls, Wis., as architect.

Holland pointed out that a federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration inspection in 2011 revealed workspace and safety issues at the current shop, an early 1970s pole barn-type building. The roof has been repaired three times and needs work again.

CBS Squared, along with two other contractors considered by the city, encourages a pre-stress concrete building to replace the current structure. While the cost is 5 percent to 10 percent more, the building will last for 80-plus years with little to no maintenance. Steel buildings only last 35 to 40 years and need significant maintenance in later years.

"The pole barn building also leaves too many limitations," Holland said.

The council approved hiring CBS Squared for $55,435, based on a $600,000 project. Holland said the company will give a presentation to the city in the fall, and likely start putting out bid requests in early 2014.

In other business Monday, the council received an update on current street projects. City Engineer Wes Brown reported that water mains are mostly complete, while work on the 11th Street area is expected to begin later this week. He also said the Seventh Street roundabout project area is behind schedule, with the other two expected to be finished by year's end.

When asked if any tentative end dates are set, Brown and City Administrator Kathy Bailey said the information they are receiving from the state Department of Transportation and the contractors is "very vague."

Concerns also were voiced about students who will be walking to school in the construction area beginning next month.

"These kids aren't bused; they ride their bikes," said council member Dan Brod. "Will they have a safe place to walk? The way it is right now, that is not safe."

Bailey said this point will be brought up to the contractors and MnDOT during the next update.

 
 

 

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