Chesterton Tribune



Phase II of Westchester/Liberty Trail could be done in September

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Phase II of the Westchester-Liberty Trail--which will extend the eight-foot sidewalk along 1100N all the way from Rosehill Estates to the Duneland Unit of the Boys and Girls Club--is expected to be completed sometime in September.

That’s the word from Chesterton Town Engineer Mark O’Dell, who told the Town Council at its meeting Monday night that INDOT has scheduled the sidewalk project to be let in April.

Phase II of the Westchester-Liberty Trail provides for the continuation of the sidewalk along the north side of 1100N from Rosehill Estates to 11th Street; and then on the south side of 1100N from 11th Street to Fifth Street.

The town has received grants for the project totaling $1,074,394 from the Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission and a $188,230 engineering contract was awarded to American StructurePoint Inc. in 2014.

New Dump Truck

In other business, members voted unanimously to authorize Street Commissioner John Schnadenberg to prepare specs for a new 1 1/2 ton dump truck, to replace a 16-year-old Ford F-550 dump.

Schnadenberg said that the Street Department made the final lease-purchase payment last year on its front-end loader and noted that, as a rule of thumb, it’s a good idea to replace fleet vehicles after 12 years of service.

The 1 1/2 tonner--one size down from the standard dump truck--is useful for work in cul-de-sacs and other small areas with tighter turning radii.

Thinking Spring

Meanwhile, it looks as though the Street Department has gotten a jump on spring. “The weather has been pretty good this year,” Schnadenberg said. “We hope it’ll continue. Because of that weather, we’ve starting shifting gears a bit.”

Specifically, crews have begun, or soon will begin, replacing federally non-compliant street-name signs in some of the subdivisions on the west side of town: Abercrombie Woods, Westwood Manor, Golfview Estates.

Under a federal mandate, the lettering on street signs must be “reflecterized” and increased in size from the old standard four-inches to six inches.

The Street Department has also replaced some old and fading directional signage at a number of town gateways. Those signs not only give turn-arrow directions for important local sites--I-94, U.S. Highway 20, Indiana Dunes State Park, the Indiana Toll Road, and U.S. Highway 6--but also mileages.

K-9 Kahr Retired

On Police Chief Dave Cincoski’s recommendation, members voted unanimously to retire K-9 Kahr into the care of his handler, Officer Erik Herbert, who has resigned from the CPD, effective March 2, after accepting a position with a PD in Lake County.

Herbert’s new employer is not interested in purchasing Kahr and, in any case, Kahr, a German shepherd, is 7 years old and nearing the end of his effective service life, Cincoski said. “To the town the dog is property,” noted Member Jim Ton, R-1st. “But to the dog and the handler it’s much deeper than that. It’s the humane thing to do. Say good-bye to Kahr for us and give his handler our best wishes.”

Dogwood Playground

Park Superintendent Bruce Mathias took a moment to thank Schnadenberg for the Street Department’s help in stripping the old playground equipment out of Dogwood Park and disposing of it. A Street Department crew also helped remove the old mulch from the site and transport it to the compost site in Crocker.

The Park Department has purchased new playground apparatus for Dogwood Park and is currently seeking quotes for its installation.

Member Nate Cobbs, R-4th, also took a moment to thank Mathias’ executive assistant, Hillary Peterson, for her excellent work in managing the Park Department’s Facebook page and responding to messages and requests for information from residents.

“People are very excited about the bond projects,” Cobbs said. “Bruce and (Town Engineer Mark O’Dell) have been doing a great job facilitating those projects. And I’m sure I don’t know the half of it.”



Posted 2/14/2017




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