2014 should prove to be a big year in Columbus as numerous major community projects are set to be started.
The first such project is the construction of a new Transfer Station to process the solid wastes generated by our residents before being sent to the landfill for disposal. A contract is being prepared for City Council approval on February 18, 2014 to construct the new facility projected to be open and operational by the end of November. The facility will utilize newer process technology that will improve the ability to transport denser, more uniform loads to the landfill. This much needed improvement will serve the community for many decades and is being funded by a combination of external and internal bonding.
The State of Nebraska Department of Roads (NDOR) will also initiate the resurfacing of 23rd Street and panel replacements on 33rd Avenue this spring as part of improvements necessary for Highway 30. The resurfacing of 23rd Street is a short term project intended to fill the gap until the reconstruction of the highway segment from East 6th Avenue to 33rd Avenue is undertaken in 2020.
NDOR is also working with the city to meet the remaining project requirements this spring so construction of the 3rd Avenue viaduct and the 18th Avenue pedestrian overpass can be begin this summer. It is anticipated the construction of these two structures will be completed by 2015 at which time the construction of the viaduct at 12th Avenue can follow with its completion by 2016.
The city is still awaiting approval of the plans and specifications by the US Army Corps of Engineers for the levee improvements necessary to meet federal requirements. That approval could come later this summer so bids can be received for the installation of new toe drains and raise the freeboard elevation of the levee to meet future storm requirements. If not initiated in 2014, we expect the project to be underway in earnest in 2015.
City staff, along with representatives from the Library Board and Arts Council, are working with a design consultant to develop renderings and space requirements for a potential new library/cultural arts center recommended by the community in the quality of life assessment conducted several years ago. Once completed, efforts will be made to obtain private and public funding for the new facility proposed to be a "community core" in the downtown corridor.
In addition to these projects, there will be significant public infrastructure built at the wellness and education campus northwest of 33rd Avenue and 38th Street. New water and sanitary and storm sewer mains will be installed along with paving necessary to serve the East Central District Health Department facility currently under construction and the proposed Columbus Community Hospital wellness complex on the property. If the Columbus Public School District receives a favorable vote on a new school on the site, additional infrastructure will be built next year to serve that facility.
The city will provide a link on this website so viewers can periodically check the status of each of these projects. If you receive "Columbus News" from the city website you will automatically be notified of the launch of the link. To sign up for "Columbus News" go to "Notify me" on the city of Columbus website, "www.columbusne.us". Please feel free to review the information and if questions arise at any time, please utilize the "askcity" feature. Questions or comments can be emailed for an answer at firstname.lastname@example.org.