Summertime in Minnesota is known as road construction season and highway departments are keeping busy.
The Crow Wing County Board heard its highway update this week from Duane Blanck, county highway engineer.
Tri-City Paving completed the grading for County State Aid Highway 8 last year and the bituminous work was finished last week.
CSAH 4 near the Breezy Point gate will be under construction to grade the drainage pond within the golf course. Anderson Brothers will construct the project. The same company will proceed with the construction on County Road 102 from CSAH 8 to the railroad tracks.
Bids will be going out for CSAH 59, known as Riverton Road, for complete reconstruction and County Road 136, known as Mitchell Lake Road, for resurfacing.
Other projects expected to begin this summer include completing phase two of CSAH 8 for reconstruction and resurfacing County Road 136 from CSAH 1 to Cass County. County Road 105 from CSAH 11 to Stark Lake Road will be graded for an aggregate base and bituminous surface.
Mid-summer projects include: reconstructing CSAH 11 from CSAH 3 to 19; and replacing drainage structures and a bituminous surface on County Road 123.
In late August, bids will go out to widen and resurface CSAH 77 from Cass County to Highway 371.
Besides construction, the department also needs to maintain current roads. Routine maintenance includes filling potholes, smoothing shoulders, cleaning up roadside litter, crack sealing and blading and smoothing gravel road surfaces.
County roads that need some of this work are 130, 138, 140, 111 and 135. Other concerns Blanck cited were to repair the curb and gutter on CSAH 31 in the Cuyuna Range, relocate the entrance and provide a turn lane on CSAH 45 in Brainerd and safety items on Highway 371 by CSAH 16 and CSAH 3 and 4 in Merrifield.
Sign posts will be purchased from Earl F. Anderson, Inc., for an estimated $5,800. The department's sign posts are nearly depleted and 600 eight-foot posts and 400 six-foot posts will be bought.
Traffic signs will be purchased for almost $9,000. About 340 traffic signs will be used. To reduce material cost the department plans to recycle used traffic signs removed from county highways.
A sewer system upgrade in Emily was approved by the commissioners to buy two tanks for about $2,000. A fuel tank for a storage tank in Deerwood was also approved for $8,600. The county would eventually get reimbursed.
Enhanced 911 signs were discussed and Blank said no one will see any activity with the signs until late this year. An addressing system for E-911 signs was established to help emergency vehicles find locations more quickly. More than 900 out of 3,000 signs at intersections in the county will be replaced with new signs.
A telecommunication proposal was approved by commissioners for a trial period. An information systems group explored telecommuting as one method of enhancing the county service delivery system without having to incur the expense of leasing or building new offices in the next year or two.
County employees will try this system from June through December. The social service department has budgeted $15,000 for this policy this year. When this policy is implemented properly it can have a positive effect on customer service, productivity, morale, transportation issues and business costs, said Sue Beck, county welfare director.
Brainerd Dispatch ©2013. All Rights Reserved.