The Ottumwa Courier

Local News

January 31, 2014

Ottumwans give input on two street projects

(Continued)

The project will be split into three stages, and during each stage there will be different detour routes and temporary entrances to businesses. Each stage will take a few months to complete, according to Sturm, so the whole project will probably take most of the construction season to be finished, depending on weather.

“We try our best to minimize the impact on the community, keep it affordable and timely,” Seals said. “That’s why we decided to break it up into three stages.”

Bids for the project will be received on Feb. 12 with the bid awarding to be presented at the City Council meeting on Feb. 18. Sturm said that once a bid has been accepted, there will hopefully be another meeting to discuss the finalities of the project with community members. The engineer’s estimate for the project has been set at $2,475,000.

In contrast to the structure of Thursday's meeting, Wednesday's public hearing was to collect input and concerns over the two-way traffic conversion of Main and Second streets during the Flood Protection Mitigation Project. Residents and business owners along those two streets from Jefferson to McPherson streets were on hand to give their input on how they would be affected by the shift in traffic.

During the sewer separation project from McPherson Avenue to McLean Street, there will be times that this portion of Main and Second streets will need to be converted to two-way at certain times. Studies over the past 25 years, plus one in 1972, have been done to examine the concept of eliminating one-way traffic through the business district, and Seals said these were now being considered again.

"We're looking at whether it makes sense to switch the whole corridor if we're going to do it," Seals explained. "We want input from stakeholders about their (businesses') schedules and deliveries. We need to know how it's going to affect you."

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