Written by MARK JAEGER
Wednesday, 16 May 2012 15:24
Local matching funds will be required for improvements planned between Hwy. 57 and Random Lake Road
Town of Fredonia officials received word last week that they have been awarded a $140,000 matching grant from the state Department of Transportation to help cover the cost of reconstructing Jay Road.
The money will come from the Town Road Discretionary Improvement Program, which is pumping $11.5 million into improving 58 rural roads across the state.
The Town of Fredonia project is the only one in Ozaukee County to receive funding in this program cycle.
Town officials have been increasingly troubled by the condition of Jay Road between Highway 57 and Random Lake Road.
Of particular concern is the difficult turning angle trucks face when approaching and leaving the Cedar Valley Cheese factory, located at the southwest corner of Jay Road and Highway 57.
When the project was discussed a year ago, officials suggested the road work could involve creating turn lanes at the Jay Road and Highway 57 crossing and cutting back a hill further west.
A preliminary estimate on a scaled-back version of that plan placed the cost of the roadwork at $286,000.
Last September, the board paid the Mequon engineering firm Bonestroo $4,000 to prepare the paperwork needed for the state grant request to make costly improvements to Jay Road a little more manageable.
Town Chairman Richard Mueller announced that the town received the grant at last week’s Town Board meeting, after discussing other possible road projects identified during a recent road tour in the township.
“I was kind of surprised to learn we are getting the funding,” Mueller said, noting that the town has four years to complete the project.
The DOT program requires a 50% match from the town, and only road projects with an estimated cost of $100,000 or more are eligible for TRIP funds.
“If it comes to a situation where we need to take out a loan to come up with the matching funds, we should do it,” Mueller said.
At the same meeting the grant was announced, supervisors discussed how an expansion at Cedar Valley Cheese might affect traffic flow.
The company is planning to add a wastewater storage tank and pumping facility at its plant, requiring a conditional-use permit.
Supr. Lance Leider suggested officials look closely at how access is provided to the new tank, noting that the state is reluctant to allow additional drives onto a state highway.
Leider paralleled the cheese factory expansion to the recent improvements made at the Mike and Lori Paulus dairy farm on Meadowlark Road.
To minimize the amount of mud splattered by trucks exiting that property, the town required the farm to install tracking pads at all drives.
“Whatever we required for Mike (Paulus), we should also require for the cheese factory just to be fair,” Leider said.
The board tweaked a draft conditional-use permit for the cheese factory expansion, and returned it to the Plan Commission for review.
A public hearing on the permit will also have to be held.