CENTERVILLE —The Centerville City Council at its June 26 meeting began the long process of getting street and utility work done in its downtown area late in the season, hoping contractors won't already be too busy to do the work come September and October.

The council unanimously (4-0 with Council Member D. Love absent) passed a resolution ordering a report on the improvements for the Downtown Street and Utility Improvements project. The city has already authorized engineers to complete the feasibility study for the project, during which they prepare estimated costs and the scope of project. 

The project will install municipal water, sanitary sewer, storm sewer, streets, curb and gutter and sidewalk improvements on downtown streets.

The city proposes to improve Centerville Road north of Main St., Sorel Street west of Goiffon Road to Progress Road, Progress Road from Main Street to Heritage Street, Goiffon Road from Sorel Street to Heritage Street and Heritage Street from Centerville Road to the east of Progress Road.

The city also means to assess the benefited property owners for all or a portion of the cost of the improvements, according to Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 429. The city's portion of the project would be limited to streets and sewer.    

Financing the project will come from a combination of assessments to benefited property owners and money from the street reconstruction fund, which currently has $900,000 in it — sufficient to cover the entire cost of project. This means that the city won't have to bond and can cover costs up front and recoup costs through special assessments as they come in, Finance Director Bruce DeJong said. 

Council also reviewed the schedule for the entire process. The plan is to accept the feasibility report, authorize plans and specifications and order a July 24 public hearing at the July 10 council meeting; authorize the advertisement for bids at the July 24 council meeting and receive bids on Sept. 5. If bids are close to the engineer's cost estimate, the city will award the contract on Sept. 11 and begin construction in late September or early October. 

The city has a strict time table for this project, as it will try to complete work by the end of the current construction season, DeJong said. 

The city will start the project this fall if contractors have time for it and aren't too expensive. If contractors don't have time to do the project, they either won't submit bids or will submit high bids because it's so late for them, City Attorney Kurt Glaser said. If bids come in too high, the city will postpone the project until 2020.  If that's the case, the city won't have to do the feasibility study all over again, but would only have to redo the assessment phase if it progresses that far this year yet, Glaser said. 


Loretta Harding

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