The new Coon Rapids city engineer is now on the job.
Tim Himmer started earlier this month and is training for the next two months under City Engineer Doug Vierzba, who is retiring at the end of September.
“It is going to be hard to learn all that Vierzba has in the last 36 years,” Himmer said.
Himmer’s last job was as Ramsey’s city engineer. He was with the city for five years.
Being the Coon Rapids city engineer is his dream job, Himmer said.
It will give him a chance to work on redevelopment projects as well as learning about maintaining older infrastructure, Himmer said.
Ramsey is still a fairly new community with a newer infrastructure and Coon Rapids is in a different place in its history and has a larger population, he said.
Himmer said he is looking forward to working with the city and its residents.
The people are the favorite part of his job, he said.
“I like the public interaction and I like dealing with the public and the daily successes,” Himmer said.
Even though he is likely to take a beating every day, it is a win if he can make one person happy that day, he said.
“I like talking to people and I like helping them,” Himmer said.
Himmer will be working with a staff of five engineering technicians as well as a project manager.
In Ramsey, the engineering department comprised four people, including Himmer. Some of the engineering work is done by outside consultants.
Coon Rapids is doing a lot of rehabilitation work and retrofitting of its infrastructure and it has a great staff that handles a lot of the work inhouse, said Himmer, who will report to Public Services Director Steve Gatlin.
That will be interesting for him. He is coming from a community that has a lot of new construction to one that is redeveloping and maintaining an older infrastructure, he said.
“Coon Rapids is an awesome opportunity for me,” Himmer said.
The staff and council have been very welcoming and they are excited to have him as part of the team, he said. “It’s a different feeling for me,” Himmer said.
“I am looking forward to the challenge of a different place in its history, maintenance and that consistent leadership structure,” he said.
Tammy Sakry is at firstname.lastname@example.org