While decorative, have they become impractical? Tama city council members continued to ponder the old paving bricks - termed "pavers" - which line most of the downtown business district sidewalks during their regular meeting Monday night.
The bricks were repurposed from the downtown streets during a 1979 revitalization project. The old brick streets on 3rd and 4th streets, and on McClellan and Siegel between 3rd and 4th were paved with concrete. In the 3rd and 4th street intersections with McClellan the bricks were left in place as part of the beautification project and those remain today.
Over the years, more than one downtown property owner has complained about the bricks which extend in from the curb line 28 inches. They say unevenness of the bricks makes removal of ice and snow more difficult.
Don Rank, owner of the 2nd Hand Store at 3rd and McClellan called recently for the city to bear the cost of removal of the bricks. He said he believed they can be dangerous and cause people to fall.
Rank, a former city council member, said he was prompted to call for the city to remove the bricks after those in front of the Tama civic Center were recently taken out.
Council member Kenny McAdoo said he feared a hodgepodge downtown in which some property owners would remove the bricks and others won't. "We want downtown to look good," he said.
There was discussion of a downtown "Street Scape" project which Belle Plaine just underwent but Mayor Dan Zimmerman was told to wait to bring more information about it to the council.
City Clerk Judy Welch said council members need to keep in mind a downtown revitalization project would also include water and sewer improvements. To change the bricks then tear up the areas for water-sewer work would result in added cost.
One solution being explored is for a cement overlay on the bricks. Stuart Eisentrager, street superintendent, has been directed to check this possible solution with Kenny Bacon, owner of Twin Cities Construction, Tama.
Sewer Improvement Project Moves Forward
Council members voted 3-0 Monday night to approve a series of policies required by federal rules to qualify for a $600,000 Community Development Block Grant. The city plans to match this amount. Voting in favor were members Steve Baier, Robert Tynissmaa and Mike Carnahan. Member Crystal Kaufman was absent and member Kenny mcAdoo arrived after the vote.
The project involves slip-lining of sewer mains and purchase of a pair of generators.
Also included is televising the system to identify problems to be slip-lined which is going on now. Once this is done, the project will be let for bids.
Also approved in the action was a $10,000 contract with Region 6 Planning commission to administer the grant improvement project.
In other business monday the council:
set a public hearing fro Nov. 18 to amend the city budget because of costs of anew chaises and refurbishing of a city ambulance which were expected to be in the last budget; some of the expense associated with the new Skateboard Park; and some water system improvements.
approved a practice drill for the Tama Fire Department to burn a residence owned by Dustin Betz at 505 Oswego. The exercise is scheduled for Oct. 26.
approved appointments of Marty Hardon to the Planning and Zoning Board and Ramona Ray and Adam Andersen to the Tama-Toledo Aquatic Center Board.
approved hiring Hardons to trim and cut back the 34 downtown planters and haul away the brush this fall at a cost of $750. Ed Hardon is to report to the council the estimated cost for fertilizer, weed killer and wood chips for the planter maintenance for next year.
heard recommendations from council member Carnahan for members to consider allowing community vegetable gardens on vacant city lots next year. Carnahan said the local Ministerial Association has reported a shortage of funds for operation of the South Tama Food Pantry and this could aid in those efforts. He also called for consideration for next year of a family-oriented Halloween hay ride around Cherry Lake.
This idea was picked up by Tama city employees and the event has been scheduled for Nov. 1 of this year.---
City of Tama will be offering a free "Haunted Hay Rack Ride" around Cherry Lake on Friday evening, Nov. 1, from 7-9 p.m. C
Those wishing to volunteer to be a character in the woods, or have props the city can borrow, please contact the city clerk's office 484-3822.
There will be one organizational meeting to pull this all together for all volunteers on Monday, Oct. 28, at 5:15 p.m. at Tama City Hall.