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Council discusses airport project

Creston City Council faces a big decision regarding the airport after a discussion during Tuesday’s regular meeting.

The council discussed the construction of turnarounds at the Creston Municipal Airport, which has been in the city’s five-year plan for several years.

The purpose of the project is the installation of a new turnaround. This device is considered a safety necessity for aircraft to get off the runways.

The estimated cost of the project was discussed through a bid tabulation.

The bid tabulation compared an engineer’s opinion of probable construction cost and the lone bid received for the project, which came from Absolute Concrete Construction Inc.

The bid from Absolute Concrete Construction Inc. was $210,882 more than the engineer’s estimate, for a total cost of $673,915.

The biggest differences were in mobilization, excavation, and pavement costs. The difference between the mobilization estimates alone was $48,568. The bid from Absolute Concrete Construction Inc. estimated $81,700 more for pavement than the engineer’s estimate.

The budget and cost of the project is 90 percent funded by the Federal Aircraft Association and 10 percent by the city.

Possible funding for the project was discussed and the idea of receiving funding from other airport entitlement funds was brought to light.

“If there’s an interest in this bid, the FAA will find a way to fund it,” said Mike Taylor, Creston city administrator.

Every airport receives $150,000 of entitlement money from the Federal Aviation Association and the airports have a certain amount of time to spend the entitlement money.

The funds that are not used can go back to the Federal Aviation Association or be redistributed to projects like this one.

The council has two choices – it can reopen the bid process to see if more bids are submitted or it can accept the Absolute Concrete Construction Inc. bid and move forward with the project.

“We could reject it or re-bid it sometime later. They may come in cheaper later, we just don’t know,” said Taylor.

The council will further discuss the project at the next council meeting, scheduled for June 19.

In other city council news:

• The council approved by 5-1 vote to approve and ratify agreements with Chauffers, Teamsters and Helpers Local 238 for both police and fire.

• The council unanimously approved selling a vacated portion of North Walnut Street adjacent to Spencer’s Chop House, 119 N. Walnut St., to Tom and Jessica Spencer, allowing them to build a new, enclosed entryway.

• The council unanimously approved hiring an equipment operator II for the street department.

• The council unanimously approved closing a portion of the alley to through traffic in the block bordered by Adams, Jefferson, Spruce and Jarvis streets.

• The council unanimously approved a 24-hour closure of the intersection of Adams and Maple streets from 2 p.m. Friday, June 29, to 2 p.m., Saturday, June 30, for the Update Uptown quilt mural painting.

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