City Notes: Busy summer is ahead for Charles City construction

By John D. Fallis, Charles City Engineer

Another construction season is underway in Charles City, and this is my opportunity to provide an update regarding this year’s construction projects.

Some of the projects are already underway and others will be starting construction in the next month or two.

Popp Excavating from Osage is the contractor for the 2017 Rolfing Street water main replacement which includes replacing the 8-inch water main on Rolfing Street from Salsbury Avenue to First Avenue.

Popp Excavating is also the contractor for the Bunn Avenue sanitary sewer project. This project involves removing and replacing the 8-inch sanitary sewer on Bunn Avenue south of Clark Street.

The Clark Street sidewalk extension project is being constructed by DeBoest Concrete. This sidewalk project will extend sidewalk along the north side of Clark Street between Pfeiffer Street and Salsbury Avenue and will connect the existing sidewalk system to the Charley Western Trail and the High School campus.

The rehabilitation of the Art Center’s front stairs is nearing completion by Renaissance Restoration from Galena, Illinois. Super Landscapes from Ossian will soon be finishing up the landscape and site work around the Revival sculpture at Victory Park.

Hydro-Kleen Inc., a Des Moines-based contractor, is under contract with the city to line approximately 7,500 lineal feet, or nearly a mile and one-half, of sanitary sewers as part of this year’s sanitary sewer lining project. The city annually lines sanitary sewers that are older and have cracks or openings which allow to inflow and infiltration from ground water.

The lining process places a liner, which practically becomes a new pipe, in an existing sanitary sewer to help prevent ground water from entering the sanitary sewer system. The city saves annual operating costs at the sewage treatment plant when we keep ground water out of the system.

We have the following projects that are in the final design phase and will soon be made available to contractors so they can submit bids or proposals for performing the work: First Avenue sidewalk extension project, Owen Street pavement repair project, Courthouse parking lot retaining wall repair project, and miscellaneous pavement repairs project.

The First Avenue sidewalk extension project will extend sidewalk along the north side of First Avenue between G Street and Salsbury Avenue. This finished project will provide a sidewalk for students to walk to the new Middle School.

In preparation for RAGBRAI, we will remove and replace a small portion of Owen Street that has deteriorated near Jung Avenue.

The boulder retaining wall adjacent to the Courthouse parking lot suffered damage during last September’s flood event. The retaining wall repair project will replace material that was washed out around the boulders and reinforce the wall with concrete.

The miscellaneous pavement repairs project is a part of the city’s pavement management system where we annually remove and replace distinct areas that have broken up within an otherwise good street. By correcting these small areas, the service life of the overall street will be maximized.

Lastly, an unfortunate project that will take place this summer is the demolition of the Charley Western Trail bridge over the Cedar River. The 1910 Charley Western Railway bridge suffered a catastrophic failure on April 8 of one of the arches.

The bridge is preliminarily scheduled to be demolished this summer, but first the US Fish and Wildlife Services and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources have to provide clearances that the work will not impact federal or state endangered species. The city is currently looking at funding and design options of replacing the bridge.

That is it for now. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me at City Hall.