OSAGE | The Osage City Council held a public meeting on Monday, Feb. 5 at the Cedar River Complex, to hear from citizens who could be affected by the proposed 2018 street improvement project.

Numerous property owners were in attendance to discuss the assessments along with various concerns including water flow on roads, and how the paving and addition of curb and gutters would help keep the water from flowing onto properties or pooling in streets.

On hand to explain project details was Mike Danburg, with SEH of Mason City.

The project, which is comprised of 25 blocks on seven streets, includes curb and gutter, 6-inch thick concrete, and one block with 8-inch thick concrete, which is in a heavy commercial area.

“Drainage becomes better with curb and gutter,” Danburg said. “It’s better for aesthetics as well as maintenance from a city standpoint, with the plowing of roads and with potholes. It also enhances the community.”

Specifically, on 13th Street, the storm water running downhill would be directed to storm sewers and tie into 12th Street sewer systems, with intakes on each intersection, Walnut to Poplar.

On these types of project, the city pays a portion of the fees as do the benefited property owners, who received assessments prior to the public hearing. Those citizens were informed, at the hearing, final assessments may be lower, but never higher. In addition, final payments could be done in a lump sum amount and paid in full within 30 days of receipt of final assessment, or installments at the county treasurer’s office, at an interest rate to be determined by council.

Another concern raised was when and what kind of notification property owners would receive before contractors began work on their streets.

“Once we get an idea of the schedule and have the pre-conference, we will have an idea of where they will start,” Danburg said. “We will require contractors to notify us when they will be closing roads and will be affecting property owners’ abilities to get in and out.”

Danburg also assured property owners any effected sidewalks and driveways would be returned back to their condition prior to construction. However, a rocked driveway could be paved, but at the expense of the landowner.

On Lyndale, residents worried a full curb and gutters would make parking difficult, due to the street already being narrow. Some suggested lower curbs rather than the full six-inch curbs. Both council members and Danburg said they would take a look at those areas and the concerns raised.

“Will the 6 inches of concrete be good on Cedar with the amount of commercial vehicles that travel down there?” Mike Spitz said.

Danburg said he believed the 6 inches would hold up fine for the occasional trucks that travel in those areas.

“If there tends to be too much, then that will have to be dealt with from an enforcement standpoint,” Danburg said. “There wasn’t enough evidence there, or on Second Street and Lyndale, we need to make it thicker. We don’t want residential streets to be thoroughfares for trucks. The 6 inches all over Osage is holding up well.”

Danburg also assured those in attendance the access to Apple Valley would be maintained at all times, while work was being completed, and special staging would be used to insure people could get in and out. Danburg added hydro-seeding would be used, rather than sod, to replace affected lawns.

The Council voted unanimously to adopt a resolution of necessity for the 2018 Street improvement project and direct preparation of detailed plans and specifications for the project.