MOUNT VERNON — Several city projects took a step closer to becoming a reality this week.
Mount Vernon Mayor Richard Mavis said the city received bids on a new methane boiler for the wastewater treatment plant on Cougar Drive. The old boiler is nearly worn out and the city received $100,000 in stimulus money to replace it.
The city collects the methane gas that’s created when it processes the sewage and the boiler helps it serve two different purposes. First, the collected methane gas is used to heat the building, and it’s also used to help treat the sewage.
The low bid was $138,224, so the city will have to add some of its own money for the project. The engineers are reviewing the bids and Mavis said the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, which is funneling the money to the city, will award the project by Dec. 10.
Mavis reported he met with representatives of Jobes & Henderson recently about two different projects in the city.
The first is the Sychar Road area project, which will be completed using Community Block Development Grant money. They are planning to blacktop the parking lot near the Hiawatha Park pavilion, create a parking lot in the wooded area on the north side of the park, and repair and replace sidewalks on Sychar Road, a portion of Pleasant Street and a portion of Wooster Road.
Jobes & Henderson should have the final design plans finished so the city can bid the project in February. Mavis said he hopes the project is completed by August 2010.
The second project Jobes & Henderson is working on with the city is the connector road between Coshocton Avenue and Yauger Road. Preliminary plans will be sent to officials at Knox Community Hospital and Lowe’s soon, Mavis said. The plans are expected to be finalized, if no major concerns are brought forth by the two companies, sometime early next year. Bidding would be completed in the spring with construction beginning in the summer.
Mavis said city officials have agreed to put a stoplight at the intersection of Yauger Road and the new connector road. He said they are able to do that without Ohio Department of Transportation support because it’s not on a state highway and they are using local funds.
Mavis reported the curb work on McKenzie and McArthur streets is going well. The pilot project is replacing the curbs on the streets in an effort to save the brick streets.
City workers were also out Friday putting the Christmas decorations up on Public Square. Mavis said the city has added more lights and will be putting up the peace tree and nativity scene again this year.
Prior to Monday’s council meeting, there will be committee meetings on the downtown parking issues and possible legislation which would allow the city to hire temporary employees for the Mount Vernon police and fire departments to fill in for employees on military deployments.
Mavis also reported the city will suspend the enforcement of the two-hour parking limit on downtown streets for the holiday season. The suspension will last from Friday, Nov. 27, through Sunday, Jan. 3.