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Winnebago County announces five-year plan to address roads, bridges

Winnebago County announces five-year plan to address roads, bridges

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Winnebago County Engineer Scott Meinders has announced the five-year program of the county road department, which has been approved by the Board of Supervisors.

Meinders said the plans for fiscal years 2022-26 do not show maintenance, including three small bridge replacements and almost 50 miles of pavement preservation treatments.

“Without the option to use TIF, it imperative that more funding be allocated to pavement preservation and maintenance,” said Meinders. “This is an intentional focus for the next five years and beyond.”

Meinders also noted that the plan is subject to change. He said some projects could be pushed back and others moved up as need warrants. He said the plan as approved will rely heavily on local funding of more than $1 million each year.

“The sooner the projects are programmed, the more likely they are to be completed according to schedule," said Meinders. “It’s also important to know that projects that are programmed do not necessarily have secured funding.”

The plan includes the following road and bridge projects, subject to change:

In 2022, an estimated $500,000 bridge replacement/conversion to box culvert on County Road R20/20th Avenue just north of Buffalo Center; a bridge replacement on 40th Avenue just north of 360th Street; and another bridge replacement on 50th Avenue just north of 360th Street in the southwest corner of the county.

Paving projects for 2022 are listed as 5.3 miles of County Road R74 north of Lake Mills in Norway Township from 490th Street to Fifth Avenue North; County Road R74 (south paving) from the Hancock County line north 10.5 miles to exiting railroad tracks; County Road A34 from County Road R74 east 1.5 miles to the Worth County line; and County Road A38 from County Road R74 east 1.3 miles to the Worth County line. The price for these projects could top $2 million.

In 2023, three more bridge replacements are planned. Two are in the far northern reaches of the county: one on 40th Avenue about one-quarter mile north of 500th Street (Lincoln Township) and the other on 200th Avenue about one-half mile north of 490th Street (Norway Township). The third bridge replacement listed for 2023, also in northern Winnebago County (Newton Township) is planned on 440th Street about one-half mile west of 150th Avenue.

Fiscal year 2024 plans also call for three bridge replacements, the first one on the southern edge of Buffalo Township on 30th Avenue, about one-quarter mile north of 400th Street. Another bridge replacement in Grant Township in southern Winnebago County would occur on County Road A42 about one-third mile west of 70th Avenue. The third bridge replacement planned in 2024 is in Newton Township on 160th Avenue about one-quarter mile north 430th Street.

An estimated $2.1 million paving project on County Road A42 is slated in 2025, running from County R34/90th Avenue east 7.25 miles to the Forest City corporate limits. This project will span much of Linden Township and most of Forest Township.

In addition, four additional bridge replacements are planned for 2025:

  • On 60th Avenue about two-thirds of a mile north of 460th Street on the border of Lincoln and Eden Townships.
  • On 70th Avenue about one-third mile south of 440th Street in King Township.
  • On 440th Street about one-tenth of a mile west of 140th Avenue in Newton Township.
  • On 400th Street about four-tenths of a mile west of 160th Avenue on the border of Newton and Forest Townships, west of Leland.

In 2026, paving of 235th Avenue in the Rice Lake residential area near Lake Mills is planned. In a change to the original five-year plan, only necessary repairs and section updates will be made in the Rice Lake area in the meantime. The 2026 larger project will address an entire subdivision. This estimated $325,000 project is slated on 235th Avenue about six-tenths of a mile north of County Road A34/425th Street to Lakeside Drive, south of Lake Mills.

“I think this plan is effective for keeping our pavements and bridges from failing,” Meinders said.

Rob Hillesland is community editor for the Summit-Tribune. He can be reached at 641-421-0534, or by email at rob.hillesland@globegazette.com.

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