City Council Briefs: Aug. 23 meeting

Proposed amendment to zoning ordinance

The council is considering an ordinance that would allow auctions as a conditional use permit in industrial districts.

The motion was passed after a short discussion in which council member Thom Walker asked if the proposed ordinance shouldn’t also include agricultural zones as places where an auction could be conducted. Mayor Jeremy Riddle asked about allowing auctions at other sites. City Administrator Mark Karnowski noted that some nurseries will auction surplus stock at the end of the season and asked how the city would deal with a request to have an auction at the parking lot of the Family Pathways thrift store.


Update on concept of a crosswind runway

Karnowski reviewed how airport board members had discussed redesigning the layout for a crosswind runway which has remained in the concept stage and not approved. Karnowski asked the council if the city should just remove the crosswind runway from the airport layout plan. Karnowski cited a report from consulting engineer Kaci Nowicki, stating that the amount of additional landings at the airport due to adding a crosswind runway would not be enough to qualify the city for federal aid to build it. The city could not afford the $2.810 million cost by itself.

Benefits of removing the runway from the plan include opening a clear zone area to allow additional buildable lots at the Meadowview housing development, and removing obstacles for the proposed extension of 21st Avenue through the edge of the airport to the industrial park, Karnowski said.


Payment for work in wastewater

plant project

The council approved paying $847,149 to Rice Lake Construction Group to expand the city’s wastewater processing plant. The original contract amount was $10.29 million, which when combined with change orders totaling $7,361, is now at $10.30 million. That is the construction part only and does not include engineering, design or other additional costs. This latest bill to Rice Lake Construction Group amounts to 88.4 percent of the contract amount being paid.


Change in study session date

The council rescheduled its next study session from the original date of Sept. 6 to a new time of Tuesday, Sept. 11, starting at 4:30 p.m.


Approval of another partial pay estimate

The council approved payment of $36,033 to Minnesota Native Landscapes for a project being financed through the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The contractor is reconstructing the bank of the Rum River in three places where it curves within the city of Princeton and planting vegetation and implementing slope anchors and other measures to prevent erosion of the river bank.


Pull-tab permit

The council approved a permit for the Princeton Jaycees to run a charitable gambling pull-tab concession at the local Madre Loca Mexican Restaurant.


Bergstrom house/old gas station

An old structure known as the Bergstrom house, and a long abandoned gas station building are closer to becoming demolished. Both buildings are located north of Casey’s General Store on Rum River Drive North,

The city’s Economic Development Authority board will buy both properties and demolish them with money from the federal Neighborhood Stabilization Program. After demolishing the Bergstrom house and former gas station, the city will give the lots to East Central Habitat for Humanity.