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City seeking funds for sewer project

Seeking more than half a million dollars in funding assistance for infrastructure upgrades, the Concordia city commission approved two resolutions and an administrative agreement with the North Central Regional Planning Commission pertaining to an application for a 2020 Small Cities Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) during its regular meeting on Wednesday.
The commission, following a public hearing on the grant application during which no one spoke, approved a resolution certifying legal authority to apply for CDGB funds and authorized Mayor Mark Matthew to sign it, approved a resolution assuring available funding for operation and maintenance of improvements and authorized the mayor to sign it and approved a CDBG administrative agreement with the North Central Regional Planning Commission.
The city is applying for $561,660.50 in CDBG funds to replace the sanitary sewer, storm sewer and alley pavement between Sixth and Seventh streets from Lincoln Street to State Street in 2020.
Replacing the existing 100-plus year-old six-inch clay sanitary sewer pipe and 18-inch clay storm sewer pipe, and regrading the alley pavement to address adequate flow and mitigating flooding of adjacent businesses within the three blocks is being proposed.
Total estimated cost of the project is $1,123,321.00.
The city would have to provide a 50 percent match of $561,660.50. Of that, $280,830.25 (25 percent) would come from the capital improvement fund, $180,83.25 (16 percent) would come from the water fund and $100,000 (9 percent) would come from Tax Increment Financing (TIF).
The use of capital improvement plan funds would delay one street mill and overlay project planned for 2020.
Because Concordia’s current Low-Moderate Income ratio is 53 percent, greater than the 51 percent threshold, the city is eligible to apply for up to $600,000 in CDBG funding for a sewer project. The downtown alley project fits that criteria.
Information provided to the commissioners from City Manager Amy Lange stated that an estimated 55 businesses and the Broadway Plaza are directly served by the sanitary sewer line. The line also receives sewage from an additional block of businesses and a residential block that feed into the line from the west.
Based on the city’s records, the existing line is over 100 years old. It is estimated that lines similar to the one to be replaced have a typical life of 50-60 years.
The existing line is functioning at 50-60 percent capacity under normal conditions. When the sewer flows are greater the line is under stress, having to function above peak capacity.
Recent monitoring of the line has shown that there are several locations in the project area where sags and deterioration are occurring. There is no particular location of failure, just general overall reduction in the ability to continue serving in its current condition efficiently and without increased maintenance.
The storm sewer system pipes in the project area are considered undersized at 18 inches based on the current load of storm water carried, and need to be replaced with 24-inch pipe.
Recent observation reveals that approximately 50 percent of the pipe in the project area is collapsed, which results in additional surface water ponding that contributes to pavement failure.
The alleys are currently surfaced with asphalt pavement, but have been patched numerous times and have gotten very rough. That impacts users and is not conducive for good flow of storm water into the system. With the lack of good drainage in the alleys, the water often infiltrates into adjacent businesses.
Of the five alternatives considered by the city, excavating the alley and placing new 8-inch sanitary and 24-inch storm sewer pipes parallel to the existing pipes, and placing a new 8-inch concrete alley surface is the most viable solution.
“It is going to take care of a lot of problems,” Matthew said.
The North Central Regional Planning Commission is assisting the city with the CDBG application and is serving as grant administrator for the project.
Also during the meeting, the commission approved the standard traffic ordinance and the uniform public offense code ordinance.
During staff comments, Concordia Fire Chief Eric Voss announced that Firefighter Jim Menard was retiring after 27 years effective September 18.
“He has done a lot for the community,” Voss said of Menard.
Voss said that James Buller will be promoted and that Kelsey Larson would be hired full-time.
Police Chief Ric Fredrickson informed the commission that during the STEP enforcement, 33 hours were put in by officers. There were 26 traffic stops with two driving under the influence arrests made.


Concordia Blade-Empire

510 Washington St.
Concordia, KS 66901