Isanti moves forward with Palomino Road street project

Plans are moving forward with the Palomino Road street and utility improvement project scheduled for this summer in Isanti.

During the Isanti City Council meeting Feb. 21, the council approved a resolution accepting the feasibility report and calling for a public hearing on the project to be held at 7 p.m. March 21 at Isanti City Hall.

The council also approved a resolution authorizing the preparation of plans for the 2017 Palomino Road street and utility improvement project.

City Engineer Brad DeWolf explained the improvements will consist of Palomino Road Southeast from the intersection of Railroad Avenue Southeast to the intersection of Highway 65.

The improvements will consist of street reconstruction, trail construction and the installation of a new water main.

DeWolf explained total project cost is estimated at $787,881. He explained benefiting property owners will be assessed for a portion of the costs in accordance with the city’s assessment policy.

DeWolf said the water main will have to be paid for outside of state aid with an estimated cost of $261,500. Isanti Mayor George Wimmer said the city is still looking at different options to pay for the water main.

If the council continues to move forward with the project and approves the bid for the project at its May 16 meeting, construction is scheduled for June through November.

The city will also hold an informal open house regarding the project to be scheduled prior to the March 21 public hearing.

Fifth Avenue street extension
Wimmer discussed the idea of extending Fifth Avenue South to Main Street, in the area of McDonald’s and the new Allina Health Isanti Clinic. He explained Fifth Avenue is currently a cul-de-sac, and this would be a continuation of the road that is already there.

Wimmer said he would like the city to get together with the impacted property owners to see what could be worked out to get the road to go all the way through.

He explained it’s a small section of road to be extended, estimated at around $200,000. He said if the road can be looked at now, with the other street project, it could lead to some cost savings for the city.

“Getting that connection through, it’s one of the goals that we had carried over from last year of getting that road punched through,” Wimmer said.

Wimmer explained the road extension would impact one parcel that is held by a financial institution and one parcel that is privately owned.

“By getting that connection through there, it would make that area much more developable,” Wimmer said.

Wimmer said there are economic development benefits to extending Fifth Avenue.

“This would be a benefit to the properties on Main Street, benefit to the properties in the Anlauf development, plus to those other two properties that are currently undeveloped and trying to help a little bit with our Main Street and trying to get more economic development going along there as well,” Wimmer said. “This would make all that area much more connected.”

Wimmer said extending the road would also help with traffic safety concerns and would help traffic in the area flow better as well.

Following discussion, the council approved a motion to move forward with a feasibility study for extending Fifth Avenue South to Main Street for a cost not to exceed $3,000, and for the city to meet with the impacted property owners.