The Reedsburg Common Council has selected Architectural Design Consultants for two projects its looking to complete in the next year.

The council unanimously approved at its June 10 meeting to authorize Mayor David Estes to sign a contract with the Wisconsin Dells architect firm to design the public works building as well as a garage expansion to renovate the police department. Alderperson’s Craig Braunschweig and Brandt Werner were absent.

The city is proposing to construct a new 42,000 square foot public works building on Zinga Drive. A space needs study determined relocating the public works building, currently the corner of South Webb Avenue and Walnut Street, was the top priority. Space wasn’t the only concern, the building is prone to flooding and sustained damage during the 2008 and 2018 floods. The police department expansion and library were next on the space needs study list.

The police stations expansion includes a 10,000 square foot addition to the existing police department to accommodate vehicle space and the existing garage would turn into office space. City Administrator Tim Becker said the police department looked into expanding the station two years ago to provide additional space for staff and vehicles to remain safe because of the technology in the police cars. He said safety is also a need with transporting prisoners. Becker said the police department’s current location on Park Street was planned in the 1990s for a 20 year period.

Design is scheduled to start in July or August 2019. The bidding process is scheduled to begin in December 2019 or January 2020 if both projects move forward. The public works building is estimated at $6 million. Completing both projects have an estimated $9 million cost.

The city is considering both projects because it could come with cost savings. Wisconsin Public Finance Professionals Carol Wirth gave a presentation explaining how current low interest rates, opportunity for premium bond financing and extending the term of construction for the project could contribute to the city saving money.

“This is something that is a starting point to let you know what is possible and let you know what your options are,” Wirth said. “So when you get to that point you know what type of decisions you can make.”

Becker said completing the public works department is the priority. If bids come in too high for the police department expansion, it will be put on the back burner and the city will have the design plans for future consideration, he said.

Other business

The council unanimously approved two Webb Fund requests. One was $4,192.50 to repair the parking lot of the Boys and Girls Club and $5,500 to install a bike repair station, including a vending machine for small bike parts, and signage at the Reedsburg Area Chamber of Commerce for bikers to use. Installing the items at the chamber was part of the city’s goal for its 2014 bicycle, pedestrian and snowmobile plan.

The council appointed Blaine Albert to the Pink Lady Rail Transit Commission as a Reedsburg representative to the county commission. Second District Alderperson David Moon was appointed to the utility commission and Fourth District Alderperson Tom Seamonson was appointed to the library board.

The council approved $500 for an In Cahoots grant for local artist Peter Krsko to construct a parade float. The item was recommended by the arts committee.

The council went into closed session to discuss purchasing property. Becker said the council took no action when it reconvened into open session.

Follow Erica Dynes on Twitter @EDynes_CapNews or contact her at 608-393-5346.

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