by Dennis Dalman
The Sartell City Council unanimously approved final-design plans and advertisement for bids for one of the most ambitious projects in the city’s history – the reconstruction of 19th Avenue S. in the western part of the city.
That roadway will be redone for a distance of 1.33 miles, from CR 4 to CR 133. Besides redoing the road, the project also includes adding water lines, sanitary sewer lines and storm-water system, pole lighting, an underground holding pond, two or three above-ground ponds and possibly up to three pedestrian flashing-light pushbutton crossings. An off-road paved trail will be constructed all along the west side of 19th Avenue.
Jon Halter, city engineer, updated plans for the project at the Nov. 22 council meeting.
The project was first envisioned in March 2020. Since then, the design plans were tweaked and design variants considered, soil borings done, a feasibility study completed, a public hearing and easement approvals obtained.
Bidding on the project will likely take place in January, and construction would begin in mid-April, weather permitting. The Daybreak and Harper’s neighborhood developments are both located near 19th Avenue S., Halter noted.
The base bid is estimated at about $7,608,000 and that bid with three alternates added is likely to be about $8,098,000.
The project’s alternate bids include plans for a trail along Sixth Street, an overlay on part of a trail on the north end of 19th Avenue and the pedestrian crossings at 19 Street S. and 15th Street S, as well as one at the roundabout at 6th Street S.
Halter explained to the curious council what an “underground pond” is. It will be, he said, a hollowed-out chamber at the road’s shoulder under the paved walking/biking trail. Pipes leading into it will be perforated to allow water run-off to slowly seep out of the pipes and into the ground.
All easements, except for one, have been obtained for the project to proceed. Stearns Electric, at its own expense, will install buried electric lines along the roadway. The improvements and connections, Halter said, are almost certain to spur more development in that area of the city.
During construction there will be a detour, Halter noted, adding residents will have access to their homes.