BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
FORT MADISON – The reconstruction of the intersection at 27th Street and Avenue L is scheduled to begin in the next 10 to 12 days, according to city officials.
At Wednesday’s regular meeting of the Fort Madison City Council, Public Works Director Larry Driscoll said the work would begin in the next week and a half.
The intersection will be closed during the construction work, with the exception of the week of the Tri-State Rodeo in September.
Councilman Mark Lair asked City Public Works Director Larry Driscoll if the work would be done before Rodeo. Driscoll said it wouldn’t be done and it was put into the construction agreement that the roadway would be reopened for four-lane traffic during that week.
“It adds a little bit to the city’s cost, but we thought it would be in the city’s best interest to open the four lanes back up,” he said.
Driscoll said the city received several phone calls about the new no parking signs on the east side of Hy-Vee.
“We had a few calls about no parking signs on 26th Street,” Driscoll said “That’s a temporary parking situation there to allow Hy-Vee to get their semi trucks to the store since 27th Street is closed.”
Currently, the traffic through the intersection daily is about 11,500 cars per day and the intersection has an accident rating of .97 according to Varley. The second highest in the city is .78 and the lowest is .11. The rating is based on per million vehicles through the intersection.
“This intersection is offset and it’s poorly signaled. We bought the property next door to the road, I think where a Dominos or something used to sit. If you go to the alley where Hy-Vee gas is, that new street will start there and aim toward Jim Scott’s to line that up better. You should be able to get 12 cars stacked there,” Driscoll said at a previous meeting.
“We’re also adding a right turn lane to go right down the highway toward Hall’s Ice Cream for better flow. It is an expensive intersection. But the staff felt when we gave you a recommendation it was a good option to invest in.”
Driscoll also said the 15th Street reconstruction project is on target to be opened up within a couple weeks and they are starting on the sidewalk next week.
In other action, the council:
- held a public hearing and approved, 5-0, a development incentive agreement with Boulders Inn & Suites in Fort Madison that gives the company a $250,000 upfront forgivable loan from the city upon completion of the addition, as well as six consecutive annual payments equal to 80% of the increased valuation on the improvements up to $250,000 for a total of $500,000 in incentives.
- approved, 5-0, to hold a hearing to authorize up to $2.7 million in sewer revenue capital loan notes. The council also approved, 5-0, to enter into an agreement with Ahlers & Cooney, P.C., of Des Moines to serve as bond counsel on the notes.
- approved, 5-0, to purchase a new replacement fire truck at a cost of $568,865 from Alexis Fire Equipment of Alexis, Illinois. The truck replaces the unit that tipped into a slough on a run earlier this spring.