A major Dyersville intersection will need to close for emergency repairs, but details are scarce as of Tuesday morning.
During a discussion regarding a proposed sidewalk, City Administrator Mick Michel said there would be a complete closure of Hwy 136 at the intersection with the railroad in the near future to deal with “emergency” repair work on the tracks.
“That was just discovered (Monday) morning and the DOT is working through it,” Michel said. “Just to let you guys know that there will be some closures — we’re not sure if they’re going to be temporary or something that will take longer than a couple of days.”
Michel added any closure would include both north and southbound lanes of traffic and an exact detour was not known at this time, but he expected work to begin within days or a week. He told the Dyersville Commercial everyone is working to make sure this closure is as painless as possible for all involved.
Later in the meeting, the Dyersville City Council approved a six-foot-wide sidewalk along the east side of Hwy 136 that will facilitate a pedestrian crossing at the railroad track and tie Dyersville’s existing pedestrian trails to Heritage Trail.
Geri Vondera, of engineering firm IIW, said the cost estimate for the construction of the trail is $137,000, but that figure does not include the specialized mat and other work within the railroad tracks. That portion of the project will be completed by the railroad and the city will be sent a separate bill, which has an estimated cost of between $12,000 and $15,000. Bids for the project are expected Oct. 29.
The long-discussed connectivity project has been stalled in part by the bureaucracy of the railroad, which took several months to deliver the needed permits to the city.
“There are actually two permits — one is to do work within the right-of-way of the railroad, and that’s what we’ve received, and the other one is called a licensed pathway (permit), and that is for the railroad to go in and lay the rubber between the tracks for the walk,” Vondera said. “I did talk to the railroad this evening and they don’t have a problem with it.”
Michel added that the railroad might do the rubber matting work necessary for the sidewalk connection at the same time it does emergency repairs.
While the weather may make the project unable to be completed this year, the contract states it must be finished by June 30, 2020.
The council discussed adding several addendums to the proposed contract, including ensuring the concrete is subject to proper curing compounds and possibly extending the sidewalk further north toward the Heritage Printing parking lot. Michel said he would be able to sign off on any necessary addendums and bring that information back to the council.
In other news, the council:
• Green-lit a proposal from Giese Roofing to replace a portion of the ailing roof at the Memorial Building. The council budgeted $70,000 for the project last year, but due to a contractor conflict, it was not completed. Michel said the current roof is leaking, but he was told by Giese it will be fine until the project can begin in the spring. The estimated $83,000 will include the removal and reinstallation of the solar panels and 20-year material and labor warranty.
• Heard from a property owner who has farmland just north of Candy Cane Park along the North Fork of the Maquoketa River that they are worried about access to their field due to the construction of the new pedestrian bridge that will connect Candy Cane and Westside parks. The property owner and renter of the crop ground said this was a huge issue, especially given harvest could start in two weeks. Michel said they are working on the access issue right now. A question was raised about the possibility of buying the approximately 5.5 acres, which was met with positive comments from both sides. Michel said anytime the city can control floodplain property, it’s better for everyone involved, adding that area could accommodate a walking trail in the future, but he added that was a decision the council needed to make.