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Public info meeting set for Tuesday: West Avenue, Willow Street to get $7.25 million upgrade this summer

Signs like these will be posted along Willow Street east of Washington Avenue starting on May 28. Construction on West Avenue is slated to start mid-summer. (Forum News Service photo)

Residents of Willow Street and West Avenue in Detroit Lakes, take heed: The two city thoroughfares are scheduled to undergo a $7.25 million upgrade this summer.

"It's full reconstruction of both street and utilities," said City Engineer Jon Pratt as he reviewed plans for the project with Detroit Lakes City Council members at their regular meeting on Tuesday.

Reconstruction of Willow Street between Washington and Roosevelt avenues is slated to begin on May 28, while the West Avenue upgrade is set for a mid-July start date, he noted. Local residents who have questions about the project are invited to attend a public informational meeting on Tuesday, May 21 in the city council chambers on Roosevelt Avenue, starting at 5:30 p.m.

In other business at Tuesday night's meeting, Alderman Ron Zeman said that the public safety committee had received 12 proposals from area architectural firms for designing the city's new police department facility, which is tentatively slated to begin construction in the spring of 2020.

"We'll be interviewing the five finalists on May 28," he said, adding that the last step is approval from the Minnesota Legislature on special legislation that will allow the city to impose a local option sales tax to fund the new facility.

Also during the meeting, Mayor Matt Brenk read a proclamation that the week of May 13-17 would be "Honor Laker Girls' Gymnastics Week" in the city of Detroit Lakes, in recognition of the team having captured an historic fifth straight Minnesota Class A state team championship in February.

Detroit Lakes Public Utilities Commission President Gary Nansen was also recognized during the meeting for having received the prestigious Maurice A. Te Paske Public Official Award from Missouri River Energy Services during its annual meeting on May 8 in Sioux Falls, S.D.

Nansen, who joined the PUC in February 2011 and became its president in January 2017, was honored for his efforts on behalf of the PUC, MRES, the American Public Power Association (APPA), and the Minnesota Municipal Utilities Association (MMUA). He is a professional civil engineer and former city engineer for Detroit Lakes.

Vicki Gerdes

Staff writer at Detroit Lakes Newspapers for the past 18-plus years, currently editor of the entertainment and community pages as well as covering city council and the Detroit Lakes School Board. 

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