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Not a cheap fix

The Board of Public Works committee received preliminary estimates for repairs to the downtown river wall at its Sept. 2 meeting.

MSA Professional Services is currently working to compile a report and field study of the wall.

The firm completed an inspection of the wall in late July, however additional testing services may be required and further discussions held with the city before the final report is complete.

Mike Laue provided Public Works Director Jeff Bodoh with some “very” rough estimates for minimal repairs, in addition to estimates for aesthetic treatments and pedestrian enhancements.

He said that the minimal repairs not including engineering and any city administration would probably be in the $175,000 to $225,000 range.

The repairs to the structure and exposed surface would include at least one major structure repair (full depth) where the utility lines run beneath the wall.  It also includes repair to the area surrounding the larger storm pipe near the west limits.  Laue reported there would be some minor repair on the backside of the wall that includes some storm drainage issues and asphalt replacement.  On the riverside, quarter depth patching/repair, surface patching, crack sealing and riprap installation along the base of the wall are needed.

Laue reported if the city wanted to include some concrete preservatives and aesthetic treatments, then they could add “very roughly” another $275,000 to $325,000.

Bodoh passed around a photograph to show one example of possible further pedestrian and vehicular travel enhancements that could be added in the project. Laue reported that depending on the complexity and scope of modifications, the city could add another $400,000 to $500,000 minimal.

Alderman John Romberg said, “We’ve been talking about this for a number of years, and every year it gets more and more expensive.”

City Administrator Kent Hager explained his biggest concern is if the wall gets to the point where it becomes irreparable. 
Alderwoman Lori Dean asked, “What happens then?”  

Hager replied,  “The price get’s a lot higher.”

The committee will continue correspondence and future discussion with MSA as it completes testing and compiles the final report.

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