MARSHALL - On Tuesday night, Marshall City Council members helped set the stage for further development at the Marshall airport, voting in favor of funding projects meant to allow commercial development at Marshall Airpark East.
The first step toward additional development at the airport, a bridge connecting the east side of the airport property with Madrid Street, has already been completed. The access the projects give to the east side of the airpark would allow "airport-related commercial industrial expansion," said Marshall Public Works Director Glenn Olson.
Marshall has received a grant offer from the Minnesota Department of Transportation's Office of Aeronautics for construction of a ramp area and signage for development at Marshall Airpark East. The offer, which would fund $1.05 million, or 70 percent of the project, is for the state's 2013 fiscal year which begins July 1, Olson said. If the city was to accept the grant offer, he said, it would need to commit local funding for the project one year earlier than the city originally planned. However, actual construction would probably not begin in 2012.
Olson said it was also recommended that the council approve a professional services agreement with engineering firm TKDA for final design and construction services for an apron and taxiway at Marshall Airpark East. The firm has already done some preliminary design work, he said, because the taxiway and roads needed to be planned together.
Council members voted 5-1 in favor of submitting a letter of intent for the grant money and entering into a service agreement with TKDA. Council member Jennie Hulsizer cast the no vote.
Later at Tuesday's meeting, the council approved a resolution awarding the sale of $4.4 million in general obligation bonds to Robert W. Baird and Co. Terri Heaton of financial adviser Springsted Inc., said interest rates on the bid for the 15-year bonds were much better than expected. With an interest rate of about 2 percent, she said, the city would pay about $120,000 less in interest than originally estimated.
The general obligation bonds would be used to fund several city improvement projects.
The council also approved a final plat making Walker Lane an addition to the city. The lane, which was created as a private drive, had been the subject of discussion for possible street improvements. Olson said the plat for a Walker Lane addition would keep the current property borders for residences along the lane but would have a public easement for the street. Olson said because of the narrowness of the street and potential access issues in case of a fire or other emergency, it would be possible to restrict on-street parking on Walker Lane.
Olson said property owners on Walker Lane will also have to sign off on the addition's final plat.