Reconstruction ahead for one of Ottumwa's busiest roads

Construction is in the future for one of Ottumwa's busiest roads.

Iowa Avenue sees heavy traffic daily from Highway 34 to Main Street due to Cargill. The road is in desperate need of an upgrade. At Tuesday night's meeting, the Ottumwa City Council will hold a public hearing for this reconstruction project.

Federal funding from a Rise Grant will cover the area from Highway 34 to K Avenue. That funding totals $1,712,195. The stretch from K Avenue to Main Street will be paid for by local funds, which will be $987,000 of city funds (capital improvement and local option sales tax), $500,000 from Ottumwa Water Works and $48,422 from the county.

"We delayed it a little bit this season due to contractors saying they had too much work at the present time, so this will be having a late finish date, so it will allow them to bid on it when they don't have their projects lined up for next year," said Joe Helfenberger, Ottumwa City Administrator. "We anticipate getting favorable bids by doing that."

Next, bids will be opened August 13 and the council will discuss and award the bid on August 19.

Also on Tuesday night's agenda is the approval to resurface Ottumwa's tennis courts. That project is a collaboration between the city, the Ottumwa School District, the Ottumwa Tennis Club, private donations and the Ottumwa Legacy Foundation, which will contribute $25,000, $10,000, $2,000, $2,000 and $5,000 respectively.