Anoka awards contract for 2013 street renewal

The Anoka City Council has approved a contract for the city’s 2013 street reconstruction.

The low bidder was Kuechle Underground, whose bid came in at $1,140,544.86 to reconstruct three-quarters of a mile of streets in the city.

Being upgraded this summer are Eighth Avenue (from Jefferson Street to Monroe Street) along with Cross and Madison streets (from Seventh Avenue to Ninth Avenue).

This will include the total reconstruction of the streets and any existing sidewalks along with replacement of underground water, sanitary sewer and storm sewer infrastructure.

This is a new neighborhood for street renewal in the city, with the past several years focused south of East River Road, near the Mississippi River.

Kuechle Underground’s bid almost exactly matched the engineer’s estimate, according to Greg Lee, public services director and city engineer.

The contractor has done a lot of work in the city in the past, heading up street renewal projects in 2008, 2009 and 2010.

“They are very familiar with our specs and staff believes they will do an excellent job ,” said Lee.

Councilmember Steve Schmidt said this year’s project had very competitive bidding. Five of the nine bids on the project were within $51,000 of Kuechle Underground’s low bid.

The bulk of the project will be funded from a variety of city funds, including street renewal, storm water, sanitary, water and electric utility funds.

Assessments to property owners will cover $345,432 of the $1.14 million overall construction cost.

Councilmember Mark Freeburg expressed concern for the overall condition of Anoka’s streets. Street renewal is currently on a 70-year program schedule in the city.

“I drive the streets just as much as anybody in this town and every spring this time of year you just shake your head and say, ‘Oh my gosh are we ever going to get caught up,’” Freeburg said.

“I feel so bad for the neighborhoods that are not on the agenda for the next how many years. Boy, oh boy we can’t go fast enough. It’s incredible how bad the streets are.”

Mandy Moran Froemming is at [email protected]