Last updated: August 27. 2013 1:47PM - 105 Views

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Students at Horace Mann Elementary may have to dodge some construction this fall after the Sedalia City Council voted on Monday to approve a new Safe Routes to School project.

This is the city’s third Safe Routes project, the first addressed sidewalks at the Sedalia Middle School and the second was at Heber Hunt Elementary, said Public Works Director Bill Beck.

“What’s great about the program is that because we’re getting these federal dollars funneled down through the Missouri Department of Transportation, we can save that money from our own budget while still addressing the issue,” he said.

The approximately $34,000 grant will fix sidewalks and address Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant issues on West 16th Street from South Barrett to South Grand avenues and on South Stewart Avenue from West 14th to West 16th streets. Construction will likely start in the early fall with a tentative completion date of Jan. 1.

During its meeting, the council also approved the bid for the planning, design and construction inspection to Overland Park, Kan.-based Affinis Corporation, which has experience with this type of grant, Beck said.

“Any grants we get there are a lot of very specific rules we have to follow and this one is no exception,” he said. “We have $80,000 worth of sidewalk repairs in our budget this year so we’ll probably get our own sidewalk crew to start fixing areas next to the Safe Routes area, to tie it into what we’re already doing.”

Beck this the program was a step in the right direction of addressing the city’s crumbling sidewalks.

“We have probably about $4 million worth of sidewalk repairs to do until they’re in perfect condition,” he said. “We’re chipping away at that as best we can.”

During the meeting council also:

• Approved several bids for the purchase of equipment and furnishings for the new Fire Station No. 2 on West 16th Street; $84,329.

• Approved an ordinance accepting Olsson Associates for professional services related to the city’s $30 million sewer project; $831,833.

• Approved an ordinance amending the city’s health plan.

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