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Doug Lindner

City prepares for community center

Council looks to budget for Iowa Street facility staff

SOLON– It’s the next step for Solon.
The city and the school district have worked for months to develop a partnership to operate the former middle school on Iowa Street as a community center.
At a Jan. 3 meeting, Solon City Council members and City Administrator Cami Rasmussen discussed how to staff it in the upcoming fiscal year.
“This is I think a transition plan to get us from where we are to where we need to go to get this building functioning for the community,” Rasmussen told council members.

Downtown Vision

A deeper look at Solon’s downtown

SOLON– A pedestrian mall and a bed and breakfast district could be part of the future for downtown Solon.
Both were presented conceptually Dec. 20 as Solon City Council members mulled the findings of a downtown visioning project recently completed by MSA Professional Services, the same consulting firm which assisted with the city’s comprehensive plan update in 2015.
Council members did not extensively discuss the results, but were expected to prepare comments prior to accepting the document at a future meeting.

Welcome Hoover Trail

Phase 1 & II construction bids received by county conservation board

SOLON– The Hoover Trail is on its way, but how will the City of Solon move bicyclists through town?
Answers will be forthcoming, but a glimpse into the future was offered at a Dec. 20 Solon City Council meeting.
City Engineer Dave Schechinger’s preliminary trail plan addressed how to link the Hoover Trail, the Iowa River Corridor Trail and Sutliff Road with businesses and services in Solon, as well as how the Hoover Trail might exit town to the southeast.

City water for GWA

Agreement in principle to move forward passes, 4-1

SOLON– The City of Solon will extend its water supply to Gallery Acres West.
At a Dec. 20 meeting, city council members voted 4-1 to approve a resolution directing city staff to negotiate with the rural homeowners association under an outlined set of conditions.
According to the resolution, the supply shall be metered from the city limits, Gallery Acres West (GAW) residents will pay a one-time connection fee and will be charged twice the rate for usage, and GAW will be responsible for the cost of constructing the main.
Council member Lauren Whitehead cast the dissenting vote.

Gallery West decision “hopefully”

Council sets Dec. 13 work session for in-depth discussion

SOLON– The Solon City Council is expected to make a decision regarding Gallery Acres West’s request for water service at a Dec. 20 regular meeting.
Council members and Mayor Steve Stange discussed the issue briefly at a Dec. 6 meeting before setting a Dec. 13 work session for in-depth deliberation.
At the beginning of November, Stange asked council members to decide on the Gallery Acres West (GAW) extension by the end of December.
The topic appeared on the Dec. 6 agenda for discussion and possible action, but Stange quickly extinguished the hope of a decision.

Finding lost water

New meters will allow city to track its own use

SOLON– How many water meters are there in the City of Solon?
Care to guess?
Public Works Director Scott Kleppe estimated somewhere around 1,200, but we’ll find out for sure pretty soon.
That’s because the city is looking to replace all of them next year in an attempt to further improve the efficiency of the municipal water system.
City council members discussed the pending project at an Oct. 4 meeting, and expect to follow up with action in the next month or two.

$2.15 million Mehaffey Trail bid awarded

Through traffic to be maintained

IOWA CITY– It’s been a while coming, but a two-mile, separated trail linking North Liberty to Mehaffey Bridge is finally on its way.
At a Nov. 2 meeting, the members of the Johnson County Board of Supervisors approved a $2,150,912.55 bid from Peterson Contractors Inc. A public meeting on the project will be forthcoming.
The 10-foot concrete trail will link the intersection of Cedar Springs Drive and Mehaffey Bridge Road (North Liberty city limits) with the walking/biking lane on Mehaffey Bridge, and includes an underpass near the boat ramp.

Being of Service

Solon graduate Eric Munson veterans day featured speaker

SOLON– “The most important things that you will do in your life will come from being of service,” Eric Munson told the students.
Munson, a 2004 graduate of Solon High School, was the featured speaker at a Nov. 14 Veterans Day program at the Solon Center for the Arts, and he was passing on the greatest single lesson he learned from his military service.

Council chuckles at UPS golf cart delivery

Shipper sought use of city property for holiday delivery

SOLON– When, what to my wondering eyes should appear, but a UPS worker at the wheel of a golf cart laden with holiday packages, pulling into my driveway.
It sounded strange, but they talked about it anyway at the Wednesday, Nov. 15, Solon City Council meeting.
The sixth and final item under New Business on the agenda was discussion and possible action on a temporary storage site requested by United Parcel Service’s (UPS) Cedar Rapids office.

Solon community center progressing

Middle School may soon be open for public use.

SOLON– Within a few months, portions of the former Solon Middle School may be open for public use.
Solon city and school officials have been working behind the scenes to investigate a collaboration which may eventually offer residents something they haven’t had before– a community center.
“The public is extremely eager to take advantage of this opportunity,” said Solon City Council member Lauren Whitehead.
The Solon Community School District (SCSD) has committed to maintaining ownership of the building, and will continue to utilize the oldest portion for administrative offices.

More time, more questions

Mayor gives council until December to decide water request for Gallery Acres

SOLON– They still don’t have answers to all their questions.
Members of the Solon City Council would like to keep looking at a request by rural subdivision Gallery Acres West to extend municipal water, but Mayor Steve Stange wants the issue resolved before the end of the year.
The decision to continue investigating rural water distribution came at a Nov. 1 regular council meeting.

Water we going to do now?

Packed house for Gallery Acres West meeting with DNR

SOLON– It was a long meeting.
So what comes next?
Members of the Solon City Council and a standing-room-only crowd packed into City Hall Tuesday, Oct. 24, to question representatives of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) about efforts to resolve water supply issues for a nearby rural subdivision.
No official action was taken from council members and it wasn’t clear whether the marathon meeting shed any new light on how best to deal with unacceptable levels of arsenic in Gallery Acres West’s (GAW) drinking water.