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PR council seeks bids for water treatment facility

By Anna Erickson

Park Rapids is moving forward with construction of a water treatment facility and significant grant funding is looking promising.

City engineer Brian Hiles approached the Park Rapids City Council Tuesday to ask for approval to advertise for bids.

“We should be hearing in the next month where we will be for funding dollars,” he said. “One of the requirements for funding dollars is that we need to have a solid bid cost so the two kind of go together.”

The city has been forced to look at constructing a water treatment facility due to increasing nitrate levels. After trying different options, including deeper wells, it was determined that the only other viable option is a treatment facility.

“I’m hearing preliminarily that it’s a very good funding package,” Hiles said. “Nobody will commit to anything but I’m hearing up to 75 percent grant on the project. It’s looking very promising as far as that goes.”

Preliminary estimates for the treatment plant were $2.4 million.

“The logical next step is to proceed in bidding it,” Hiles said. “I have written the specifications and bidding documents so that the council will have 60 days to do anything. You’ll have time in order to find out exactly what your funding package will be. The next requirement from the agencies is a bid number.”

Bid opening will be Thursday, May 23.

“We’ve decided to have a pre-bid meeting on May 13 for contractors to come in and ask questions about the project after a review of the plans,” Hiles added. “The site will be open and flagged so contractors can see where the project will be located.”

He is already hearing from contractors interested in the project.

“I talked to one contractor today that I’ve worked with on previous water plants and he’s looking for it,” he said. “A lot of guys are hungry (for work).”

Councilman Rod Nordberg asked where the grant funding came from and whether it was state or federal.

The potential grant money comes from federal Department of Employment and Economic Development funding and the Public Facilities Authority drinking water revolving fund, which comes down through the Environmental Protection Agency.

The water treatment facility will be built to the south of Frank White Education Center near the water tower.

In other business, the council:

n Approved a resolution ordering preparation of plans and specifications for the Red Bridge Park/Beach Road/Washington Avenue improvement project.

n Approved modification 2 of Tax Increment Financing District No. 1-9 to remove parcels.

n Discussed meeting with the Henrietta Board of Supervisors regarding the Orderly Annexation agreement. The council set a preliminary date of Tuesday, May 21 at the Park Rapids Area Library.

Anna Erickson
Anna Erickson is editor of the Wadena Pioneer Journal.
(218) 631-2561