Present were Scott Manchester, Assistant Director of Streets; Jim Bodenhamer, Susan Stockton and Jennifer Baker, Committee members, and Arnold Knox, Planning and Engineering Director.
Scott began the meeting by telling the Committee the Street Department sent a couple crews to Wynne, Arkansas to help them with their March 31st tornado cleanup. He said Arnie and a crew of six left on April 1st with three dump trucks, two backhoes, and chainsaws. He said they worked from Saturday the 1st until Friday the 7th, and another crew left on April 10th until FEMA took over on Thursday April 13th. This was something the Mayor requested, Jennifer said it was great to help them out. There was discussion about the work that was done, and Scott mentioned the City also helped out when Gassville had tornado damage in 2008. Arnie said by the time the first crew got to Wynne on Saturday afternoon, they were in good shape with their streets already cleared. He added, the crew went to work right away cleaning up and hauling brush.
Scott said at last month's meeting, there was a question on the dollar amount of the grant for the Bike Path. He said it is $164,000 and he asked Arnie to explain the current costs of that project. Arnie explained to the Committee the current cost of $125,845.08 was not the total to be applied to the grant. He said the box culverts are not included in the grant. Right now, approximately $40,000 has been spent toward that amount, and he said the cost of $164,000 will not be the total cost of the project. He added, we are anticipating more like a 50/50 split in costs to this project. Jim said he has received calls asking when this project will be completed, and it is estimated that it will be October/November 2023. Arnie reported the City is applying for a $300,000 grant to purchase solar lighting for along the trail
Scott told the Committee the Street Department took delivery of 4 - ½ ton pickups and 3 - 1-ton trucks the first week of April. He said the ½ tons came to a cost of $40,687 each, and the 1-tons were $46,336 each and are just the chassis. They will have toolboxes installed before being put into use. He added, prices will be compared, and the lowest will install the toolboxes on the 1 tons. Bed liners on the ½ tons will be sprayed in by the mechanics at the street shop. He also reported a trip was made to federal surplus on March 29 to pick up a 1993 Chevrolet 1 ton flatbed for the third construction crew. This truck was purchased at a cost of $2,500.
A turn signal has been installed at Club Boulevard and Highway 62. It was completed last week and is a protected left turn for both east and westbound traffic. The cost of this work will be included in next month's meeting.
Scott reported the police department has a new canine and the officer that will be handling it needed a dog run. One of our construction crews went over to Carlile Highlands and poured a concrete pad, and the police department put the fencing up. An invoice was sent to the police department for reimbursement of all costs totaling $2,315.81.
The Street Department has finished all the concrete work for now at the new fire department location on Highway 62. An invoice has been sent for reimbursement to the Street Department for all costs totaling $71,869.17. Arnie said the architect has been hired, and there are two construction managers bidding on the project, with the city hoping for a third; those bids will open on the 21st. He added they were hoping to begin interviews the first week of May.
The Russell Lane rebuild project is going well and curbs have been completed. That crew is now working on pouring sidewalk, with the Maintenance crew digging out the road. Scott told the Committee asphalt and landscaping will be completed by June. The Committee discussed the traffic issues, and the total cost to the Russell Lane project as of March 31 is $540,720.55.
The Clysta Willett Park work has been completed and looks great. The total cost to this project is $320,126.88. The General Fund has already reimbursed the Street Department $135,118.21. We are waiting for the last of the statements to come in to send an invoice, and the balance due will be $185,008.67.
The Access Road to the Community Center at McCabe Park hasn't seen much work this past month, except for wingwalls that were poured at the box culvert. Scott said they are waiting on plans to see where they will go next. There was additional discussion about a planned roundabout that will be built; Arnie said they were about 80% sure there will be a small, slow-speed roundabout built after the box culvert, which will direct drivers to the parking lots of the Community Center. He explained the need for a roundabout would be for the three large parking lots planned, plus two side roads coming into a small area. Jim said he had been asked when the Community Center was planned to go to bid. Arnie said he estimated June because the architects are not finished with their final work. He said the road construction cannot start until the plans have been finished. After discussing the access road and the Community Center, the current cost to this project is $79,988.88.
The landscaping has been completed on Highway 62 in front of the Baxter County courthouse. Scott reported the crew has finished and the Parks Department will do the landscaping. Susan commented that the veterans wall can be seen so much better. The final cost is $17,789.79.
Scott reported Maintenance for the month of March totaled $30,183.02, which included sign maintenance, trimming limbs, cleaning out bridges and box throats, the already discussed dog kennel pad at Carlile, clean and check culverts, etc.
The Budget Summary was reviewed. Scott told the Committee there is a roller and a skidsteer with attachments ordered and will be delivered sometime this year. He said a laydown machine, three backhoes and tractor/mower are planned for purchase.
The Wayfinding Program was discussed at length. Arnie reported that the architect requests $6,000 to change the plans, and he understood there will be a workshop with the council to attend for discussion on the changes to be made.
Jim asked Arnie if ARDOT was ready to go to bid on the bridge at 5 South. Arnie reported they are still working on the utilities, and expects it will be closer to 2025 before it goes to bid.
Scott reported a crew went out to the Baxter County Animal Control to pour two dog runs about 10x20. Jennifer asked what the agreement was with the county and city on animal control, Scott said this was something the Mayor asked to be done to help them out.
Susan thanked the Street Department for taking care of the unsightly fence at the retention pond on Colewood. She said it looks better without those slats in the chain link.