The Winder City Council, at its Tuesday, Oct. 8 meeting, approved a nearly $2 million agreement related to the city’s massive joint raw water reservoir project with the City of Auburn, which is scheduled to be constructed over the next few years.

The engineering design agreement, with Carter and Sloope Consulting Engineers, not to exceed $1.99 million, is for the project intake, pump stations and pipeline projects and covers design, permitting and bidding assistance, construction contract administration and construction observation for two new raw water intake structures and associated pump stations on the Mulberry and Little Mulberry rivers, plus the quarry reservoir pump station and raw water main from the quarry to Winder’s existing water treatment plant on Highway 53.

Construction on those elements is expected to take 18 months with an estimated 12 months of design work prior to that, city utilities director Roger Wilhelm said.

Future phases for Winder’s portion of the reservoir project will include additional site work at the quarry and then land acquisition for the pipeline. Wilhelm said the city has identified more than 100 parcels that would be impacted by that.

All of that work is expected to take at least three years, Wilhelm said.

OTHER BUSINESS

In other business Tuesday, the council:

•approved contract item agreements with the Georgia Department of Transportation for water and natural gas infrastructure relocation to be included in construction of a new interchange at State Route 316 and Highway 53. GDOT has approved 50-percent utility aid for the work. The city will be on the hook for roughly $190,000 for the water infrastructure relocation and $305,000 for the natural gas relocation. The council also approved a memorandum of understanding with GDOT that “if an agreeable percentage of utility aid is received,” the city would agree to including those utility relocations into the contract for the construction of the Hwy. 11/316 interchange.

•approved a change order to the roughly $1.2 million Jackson Street parking project, in the amount of $250,000, for the rebuilding of the parking area and improvements to the catch basins.

•approved the demolishing the northern portion and interior of 88 East Candler St., the old Schaffer building, as part of a stormwater retention project. The work will be done by Mathis Grading for $77,500. The city plans to preserve three of the building’s exterior walls and could potentially use them for murals. City administrator Donald Toms said that preservation should not affect the city’s stormwater plans.

•approved an ordinance regulating the placement and use of mini-cell towers in public rights of way and amendments to the city code that officials say bolster the aesthetic standards for the use of public rights of way.

•approved the purchase of a flatbed dump truck from Akins Ford in the amount of $56,447 for the utilities department. Councilman Chris Akins, who is the general manager at Akins Ford, recused from the vote.

•approved an event permit application submitted by the Winder Downtown Business Association for Streets of Treats from 5-7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25. The event will coincide with Spooktacular at Jug Tavern Park, which starts at 6 p.m. There will be street closures for the parking areas along East Athens Street between North Broad Street and Park Avenue and for North Jackson Street between East Candler Street and East Athens Street. East Athens Street will remain open for traffic between Broad Street and Park Avenue; however, the parking areas will be closed to accommodate pedestrian traffic.

•approved closing of non-essential city operations for Monday, Dec. 23, as an amendment to the city’s holiday schedule.

•issued a proclamation for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

The council met in a closed session at the end of its Monday, Oct. 7 work session to discuss potential litigation and potential real estate disposition. No action was taken.

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