BEATRICE – The City of Beatrice would take over control and maintenance of South 25th Street from Scott Street to Quail Ridge Circle, under an agreement recommended for approval Wednesday, by the Beatrice Board of Public Works.  South 25th is an entrance to the Flowing Springs area, and a homeowners’ association has sought a city takeover of that stretch.


"The streets out there were developed as private streets open to the public. So, the homeowners' association takes care of all of the maintenance on those streets. For at least annually for the last decade, The Flowing Springs Homeowners' Association has approached the city about taking over control and maintenance of various streets, out there. This time, they narrowed it down to just South 25th Street, from Scott Street to end at where Quail Ridge Circle begins".
BPW Manager Tobias Tempelmeyer says the agreement would first require the homeowners’ association to make improvements by June 30th, 2021, including asphalt, curb and gutter and drainage.


The city is less likely to take over streets just east of the Covered Bridge, because those streets are not built to city standards and they are closed-loop streets not open to through-traffic.


City Engineer James Burroughs says at some point in the future, 25th Street will likely connect to South 19th, farther to the west.
"I really feel like that area to the west of Covered Bridge is prime real estate. I think it's going to develop, no matter who owns it. I see this roadway becoming a main thoroughfare for the traffic access in that area...from 19th Street down through there and along 25th Street. I worry about with that increased traffic and the increased homes, if we don't take it over, I don't know that they will be able to keep up with the roadway...and the standards with that road will drop significantly".


Burroughs said the Covered Bridge in that area is actually a box culvert made to look like a bridge. Although not approved by an engineer, he says it is structurally sound and can handle fire truck traffic. The city currently has control of a small stretch of road west of the Covered Bridge. Tempelmeyer says there has been an increase in traffic in that area, as home development has taken place.


The Beatrice Board of Public Works Wednesday recommended city council approval of a more than $3.2 million bid for a de-watering project at the city’s wastewater treatment plant. The bid is from Building Crafts. Construction of the improvement will cost about $2.6 million, with the remaining cost as equipment.
The expense is within budget and will still leave the wastewater department with a cash reserve of at least one-million dollars at the end of the fiscal year.


The Board of Public Works Wednesday found out that timing, is sometimes important…..during approval of a fuel bid.
BPW Manager Tobias Tempelmeyer said a savings has been realized. By waiting a couple of weeks, about $5,500 was saved.


The board approved the bid of Sapp Brothers Petroleum for diesel fuel, at a $1.41 per gallon, and unleaded at nearly $1.21 per gallon. The contract is for 20-thousand gallons each, of diesel and unleaded. Fuel prices have dropped significantly at the pump, in recent days.


The public works board also approved a utility relocation agreement between the City and Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad, for relocating a water line at West Hoyt Street on railroad property. The relocation, which involved an easement granted by Gage County, is to be completed by June 1st.


The board held their meeting by video or phone conference, under a special governor’s order allowing that method to be used during the coronavirus pandemic.