The New London Board of Public Works Committee discussed potential capital improvement projects at its April 6 meeting.
The board reviewed three different options for projects that would be covered by an anticipated bond issue in 2016.
Option A included the river wall project at an estimated $545,000, but did not include reconstruction of Division Street from Oak Street to Wolf River Avenue and Beckert Road to Oak Street. Option A also included over 20 other street projects and nine sidewalk projects for a total of $3,226,412.
Option B included the river wall project and Division Street project, which has a combined cost estimate of $1,398,357. Public Works Director Jeff Bodoh reported that if the city decides to do Division Street, the county would be paying part of the engineering costs.
Members asked if there was an urgency in completing the Division St. project. Some members felt that the road was not in that bad of condition.
Bodoh said the primary issue is with the storm sewer underneath the road.
Neighbors expressed concerns with the flooding that occurs at the intersection of Jennings and Division and elsewhere related to the same storm sewer.
“The flooding occurred five or six times in one year,” said Bodoh.
Alderman Bob Besaw said, “We don’t want to wait until we have a bigger problem to fix it.”
Alderwoman Lori Dean agreed. “I think if something needs to be done, we should just go ahead and do it.”
Mayor Gary Henke said the Division Street project was like the river wall.
“It isn’t going to get any cheaper, the longer we wait,” said Henke.
Option B included 15 other streets and four sidewalk projects, in addition to the river wall and Division Street projects for a total estimated cost of $3,633,111.
Option C did not include the river wall or Division Street, but included 26 streets and 10 sidewalk projects for an estimated cost of $3,059,995.
“These lists are flexible,” said Bodoh. “We’re not looking for a decision tonight. I wanted to present them for discussion and let everyone have some time to drive around a look at them.”
Alderman Mike Barrington suggested that members look into the specified areas and streets on the list, then give them a rating of 1 to 5 and return their findings back to Bodoh for future discussion.