City to upgrade downtown sidewalks
Kasson will spend $54,000 to improve sidewalks on Main Street between Second Avenue and Fifth Avenue Southwest.
City councilors approved the motion Aug. 9 and awarded a bid to Legends Concrete, Rochester.
It has been some time since the city has undertaken a sidewalk project of this size, City Administrator Theresa Coleman said.
She said the city spent $40,000 on sidewalks in 2015, and $17,000 in 2016, but the $54,000 will be concentrated downtown, using city funds. People have commented on areas in which sidewalks are out of alignment or need overall improvements, she said.
“I think it’s great,” Coleman said of the project. “Anything that makes downtown more attractive is great.” City engineer Brandon Theobald said workers will remove cracked concrete to reduce tripping hazards, and replace pedestrian ramps to comply with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards. They also will install a pedestrian ramp at the Kasson Public Library to help make the sidewalk to the facility more accessible to people with disabilities.
Theobald said the work must be finished by Nov. 1. There will be small sidewalk closures along Main Street, but it’s anticipated they won’t affect businesses. He said the city addresses problematic sidewalks each year.
“We’ve had some tripping hazards,” he said. “We want to maintain it in good condition. That’s why we’re making the investment in the Main Street area, to help the commercial businesses and make it more accessible to people with disabilities.”
Curb and gutter has been installed on Third, Fourth and Fifth Avenues Northwest in the first phase of the city’s $6.78 million street assessment project.
The project, to include 11 phases, is expected to finish in 2018.
Theobald said utilities continue to be added on other phases in additional parts of the project. He said the Third Street Northeast paving project was recently completed in about a half- day, to get the street ready for the Festival in the Park parade. The $82,000 project was completed by Rochester Sand & Gravel, Inc.
The city has requested an easement to be able to use access points in and out of Shopko Hometown – on Mantorville Avenue and Fourth Street Northwest – to be able to eventually develop the lot. “We’re hearing from people, but nobody’s saying, ‘Oh, we’re ready to buy,’” Coleman said.
The Shopko store at 301 Mantorville Ave. S. in Kasson is owned by Kranthi Realty LLC, Green Bay, Wis. The property is listed with a sale price of $4,437,500 on LoopNet.com, a commercial real estate marketplace, through Minneapolis- based Upland Real Estate Group.