Archived Story

RTC project update coming to council [UPDATED]

Published 4:20am Monday, December 16, 2013 Updated 6:22am Monday, December 16, 2013

Since the letter of intent with Historic Kirkbride was approved, the development plans for the Regional Treatment Center haven’t been in the spotlight at Fergus Falls City Council meetings for a few months.

However, an RTC project update is listed on the council agenda for Monday’s meeting under petitions and communications. Following the meeting, the council will adjourn to a closed meeting to consider an offer/counteroffer of the sale of the RTC to Historic Properties.

The next step for the estimated $41.4 million proposed project is to approve a development agreement. Developer Ray Willey met with city officials earlier this month to fine tune and finalize the agreement.

Historic Kirkbride has done its due diligence the past few months in regard to the RTC plans, which includes a hotel, restaurants, apartments and associated amenities.

Prior to Monday’s regular meeting, the council will have a work session to receive a brief update on the Pebble Lake Golf Course, and also to dive deeper into possible capital improvement projects for the Community Arena.

Projects on the list include mill and overlay of the arena parking lots, second floor lobby windows and bathroom upgrades, completion of the community room, and installation of ADA accessible bleachers. The list totals $629,000.

Perhaps one of the more high-profile items on the list is a dehumidification system, due to moisture issues in the south arena.

The council talked at length during the Nov. 18 meeting about the dehumidification system and funding options for the project.

A resolution to authorize city staff to obtain quotes for an option for the project to proceed with plans and specifications for a more long-term option, and to finance both projects through sales tax revenues passed by a 6-2 vote, with Anthony Hicks and Ben Schierer voting against it.

Both Hicks and Schierer did not agree with using the sales tax revenues as the funding option for the dehumidification system project.

The dehumidification system was an alternate in the original arena project, because city staff was staying within a budget, former Public Works Director Anne Martens said during a recent meeting.

The first option, costing $31,900, is to add cooling via a two-inch water line on the second floor of the arena to the air handing unit (AHU) S-1 that supplies the south arena. The long-term option, costing $214,000, is to add a desiccant dehumidification unit.

During the Nov. 18 meeting, City Adminstrator Mark Sievert recommended holding a work session to discuss the issue further.

The city council will meet at 4:30 p.m. Monday for a work session and at 5:30 p.m. for the regular meeting in the council chambers at City Hall.



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