Construction of Defiance’s new traffic roundabout at Ottawa and Cleveland avenues moved closure to fruition Tuesday night when city council approved a contract with a Napoleon company to build it.
Council also let lie an ordinance allowing expansion of the city’s downtown outdoor refreshment area (see related story) among the five legislative items on its agenda. And officials learned of a possible partnership with Defiance College on water quality issues and discussed lifeguard hiring issues at Kingsbury Pool (see related stories).
In an emergency ordinance unanimously approved by council Tuesday, Vernon Nagel Inc., Napoleon, was awarded the contract to build the traffic roundabout at Ottawa and Cleveland. The company’s successful bid ($2,421,699.17) included alternates for lighting within the structure.
The only other project contractor issuing a bid was Geddis Paving & Excavating, Toledo, at $2,767,488.21 while the engineer’s estimate for the basic construction bid was $2,685,275.54.
A 90-day intersection closure is anticipated when construction begins while the completion deadline is Sept. 30. Some work at the intersection already has occurred — mostly for the relocation of utilities.
Most of the project will be covered by the $2.3 million in grant money the city has secured from four sources.
Bids for a separate contract to build a multi-use path along Ottawa Avenue — south from the roundabout to Spring Meadows Manufactured Home Community — will be opened later.
Addressing another project in the works — the demolition of several buildings in the 100 block of Clinton Street, primarily with FEMA funds — council approved a related emergency ordinance.
The ordinance will allow the city administration to seek a waiver from the Ohio Development Services Agency to use as much as $100,000 in revolving loan funds to cover the additional cost for taking down one building.
The estimated demolition cost for all the buildings is $280,973, which is higher than expected due to the difficulty of separating two structures, according to the city. One of these will be demolished, but it is attached to another building — now occupied by Spanky’s Bar — which will remain.
Law Director Sean O’Donnell told council that the outside wall at Spanky’s will need additional support to ensure its integrity.
Like the roundabout ordinance, the legislation contains an emergency clause, meaning it becomes law upon the mayor’s signature rather than after the regular 30-day waiting period.
Also Tuesday, council passed an emergency ordinance that would allow Kingsbury Park’s deteriorating tennis courts to be rebuilt as pickleball courts.
The cost of the contract with Maumee Bay Turf Center is $110,874.
According to Finance Director John Lehner, private fundraising will provide $73,000 toward the project with the city picking up the difference.
Ward 2 Councilman John Hancock extended his thanks to all who contributed, prompting Lehner to announce the donors’ names. They include the Defiance Area Foundation, Defiance County commissioners, ProMedica Defiance Regional Hospital, the Coressel Foundation, Mayor Mike and Laurie McCann, Bashar and Monica Kanouh, and Randy and Chris Yoder, along with the Defiance Moose Lodge and Hubbard Family Foundation.
“A big thank you to all of them,” said Lehner.
In other business Tuesday:
• council approved an ordinance allowing a contract for continued monitoring of flow meters in the city’s wastewater collection system. The cost to employ the firm Xylem Vue for 10 months is $51,978.
• At-Large Council Member Jill Krutsch said she attended a recent Defiance Community Cultural Council board meeting in which plans to hold events, such as a free movie night and Music in Your Parks, later this year were discussed.
• Ward 1 Councilman Steve Corbitt thanked Defiance’s first responders, noting police and firefighters who made a recent “Tunnel to Towers” presentation to a “Gold Star family” which moved to Defiance.
• council discussed the possibility of allowing the public to again attend meetings without prior notice. O’Donnell said he would review the matter and return to council for further discussion.
• McCann said that despite Defiance recently obtaining a high rating (19th) as one of Ohio’s safest cities by the website Safety.com, residents should remain vigilant about locking their cars and homes.
• council held two executive sessions to discuss an application for economic development and assistance, and the purchase of property.