A public hearing on the reconstruction of West State Street was held during the Iola Village Board’s Sept. 13 meeting.
Preliminary designs for the project were presented by Steven J. Brueggeman, of Martenson & Eisele Inc.
Homeowners expressed regret that seven big trees will need to be removed for the road project.
“All my shade is going,” said Shirley Shuda, a State Street resident. “Forty years ago when they put in Summit Street, I lost all my trees on that side.”
“We hate to cut down existing trees,” stated Village President Joel Edler, “but it’s necessary in order to do this project.”
“Will there be any affect on taxes in the future?” asked Sarah Nielson, who also lives on State Street.
“Taxpayers are not paying for this (project),” Edler said. “The cost is you’re going to lose trees and the sidewalk will be closer to your houses.”
Another resident questioned the need for a reconstruction of State Street.
“The road is not in the best of shape and there was no pedestrian way,” Brueggeman stated.
“The town seems to be expanding west, and there is a need to provide sidewalks,” Edler added. “One thing this project will do is clean up a lot of junk from that side hill.”
“We want to center the road into the middle of the right of way, moving it about 3-4 feet south,” Brueggeman explained.
The plan includes installation of curb and gutter from Town Line Road to Grove Street, and a sidewalk on the south side of the roadway from Town Line Road to Main Street. A 50-foot-long retaining wall as high as 10 feet will be built against the steep hill on the north side of the roadway.
The project includes the demolition of the old feed mill on West State Street. Also, the project addresses drainage and water pooling issues in the area.
Another change will be only parallel parking on State Street.
The project is scheduled to begin in March 2011, and will be completed by October. Brueggeman expects the road to be open to local businesses and homeowners during the construction. Residents will be notified of brief two-hour closures.