Woodin Avenue Bridge project on track

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by Richard Uhlhorn

Last week, June 11-16, was a marathon of meetings and events in the Lake Chelan Valley.

On Tuesday, Chelan City Council met in its regularly scheduled council meeting and the major topic of discussion was how to fund the additional $870,000 on the Woodin Avenue Bridge Project that was awarded to Selland Construction.

At a special City Council meeting on Tuesday, June 5, the Council voted to award the Woodin Avenue One Lane Configuration Project to the lowest responsible and responsive bidder, which happened to be the only bidder. Selland bid $3,159,528.08.

The project includes the rehabilitation of and modification to the roadway configuration of the Woodin Avenue Bridge from two lanes to one-lane of vehicle traffic with increased sidewalk widths and a bike lane.

Street and intersection improvements will be made to adjoining streets as well as the improvement of the Woodin Avenue Landing Park. It also includes the replacement of approximately 1,200 lineal feet of water main underneath the bridge structure.

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Finance Director Cheryl Grant went over funding options on the Woodin Avenue Bridge Project that was over the Engineers Estimate by $900,000.

City Finance Director Cheryl Grant brought forth several funding options, but is looking at extending a bonding option to $1.6 million dollars for a period of 12 years. “These are all ideas at this time,” she said. “I was uncomfortable going 15 years because it could affect our interest rate.”

She told Councilman Ray Dobbs that the City’s Bond Reserve Fund is in place to help pay the bond debt if the Real Estate Excise Tax (REET) doesn’t provide the enough funds to pay the debt. “It anything comes crashing down, it will the housing market,” said Grant. “We’ve got some backup to pay that debt. We are in great shape.”

A final recommendation will be brought back with the ordinance for approval at the July 10 Council meeting. If the Council authorizes the Mayor to execute and finalize the proposed agreement, the City will notify Selland Construction of the contract award in writing whereupon Selland will have 14 days to return a signed contract. Notice to proceed will be issued afer the bonds and evidence of insurance have been approved and filed by the Contracting Agency. The Contract time will begin seven days after Notice to Proceed has been issued.

Grant also reminded the Council that the Project was a $3.9 million dollar project.

In other business:

Public Works Director Jake Youngren asked for approval of the Six Year Transportation Improvement Plan. “It is very much a living document,” said Youngren. Each year, the City revisits its transportation plan.

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Public Works Director Jake Youngren explained the six year transportation plan along with other Public Works issues. 

Councilman Ray Dobbs asked if there had been any discussion about widening Boyd Road and constructing sidewalks and putting in sewer. Youngren replied that he has heard nothing he is aware of.

The council approved the Resolution unanimously.

City Clerk Peri Gallucci brought forth the Rate and Fee Resolution. The only thing that has changed is the charge for electronic records. “Everybody will be able to log into public records. It is a straight forward policy,” said Gallucci.

There were a number of Sewer Lift Station, construction management agreements and booster pump motions on the agenda which the Council unanimously approved.

The Higgs Booster Pump Station was closed out, but Councilman Ray Dobbs asked about water pressure in that neighborhood. He said that out of curiosity he went to the neighborhood and was told they were still having problems with water pressure. Youngren replied that the problem is on Public Works radar. Dobbs said, “That’s a tough spot because of the elevation.” Youngren said that there were pressure fluctuations and that they were looking at different alternatives to the problem.

The Council approved an auxiliary generator for the Darnell’s Booster Station in case of another fire that knocks out electricity. “We want to quickly hookup if a loss of power happens again,” said Youngren.

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Sgt Chris Foreman presented the first quarter’s Sheriff’s Report to the Council as required by the City’s contract with the Sheriff’s Department. 

Sgt. Chris Foreman was on hand to give a quarterly Sheriff’s report for Chelan. “It has been pretty slow,” said Foreman. “It’s changing now that we are into summer.”

Councilwoman Erin McCardle asked about the policy regarding Sheriff’s cars careening through Woodin Avenue on the way to a call. Foreman said that when a code call comes in the Deputies will use the direct route to the issue. “It is not a normal affair,” he added.

Mayor Cooney asked about unmuffled cars and Foreman said that was an enforceable action, but when Dobbs asked about Harley Davidson motorcycle and how loud they were, Foreman said they had to prove they were over the decibel level.

Councilman Tim Hollingsworth complained about young people driving very fast in South Chelan. Foreman said if his deputies don’t know about it they can’t respond to the problem. “Tell us where and we will work on it”

The next City Council meeting is on July 10

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