by John Mueller
The Belle Plaine City Council is moving forward with its long-standing plans of improving the look of downtown by uplighting trees along Meridian and Main streets.
Monday evening (April 17), the city council unanimously accepted bids from Gregory Electric of Belle Plaine for the electrical work associated with the downtown tree uplighting and OMG Midwest (Chard) for the concrete work. Gregory’s low bid was $33,000. Chard’s bid was $27,637.50. The engineer’s estimate for the work is $69,520.
The lights will light the trees from the ground up with multiple colors.
The city council has yet to OK the purchase of the actual lighting equipment and controllers for up to14 trees. The city currently has a quote for $37,870 from a Twin Cities firm. It is working to get an additional quote to assure a good price, said Mike Votca, Belle Plaine’s city administrator.
The overall cost of the uplighting project is expected to be just over $98,500. Funding will come from an annual $13,000 donation by the Belle Plaine Chamber of Commerce and the city’s capital fund.
Votca said the uplighting work on the trees would likely be done this summer.
Orderly Annexation
The city council also passed a resolution clarifying the city’s portion of the orderly annexation between the City of Belle Plaine and Blakeley Township. The agreement will complete the annexation of 43.29 acres of the Kimberly K. Devine-Johnson property at the west end of West South Street.
The property is being annexed to facilitate the installation of a solar garden. The developer of the project – DG Minnesota CSG4, LLC – paid the township a one-time fee of $10,822.50 to accommodate the loss of property tax base when the Devine property becomes part of the city.