The Cottage Grove Economic Development Authority took steps Tuesday to bring a corporate headquarters -- and nearly 100 jobs -- to the city as early as next May. EDA members unanimously authorized a purchase agreement for acquisition of the site near Hamlet Park off of 95th Street, and a development agreement with Werner Electric Supply Minnesota at its Tuesday morning meeting. The project now lands in the lap of the city council for approval at a special meeting Wednesday night.
Area lawmakers have begun calling for increased attention and funding to the state's transportation infrastructure after the fatal failure last Wednesday of an Interstate 35W bridge spanning the Mississippi in Minneapolis. In an area surrounded by two major rivers, the Mississippi and St. Croix, south Washington County commuters cross a number of bridges -- some in better shape than others. The county has six bridges rated "deficient" by the Minnesota Department of Transportation, including the famous Stillwater Lift Bridge.
Here's a look at raw data on some of the many area bridges spanning the Mississippi and St. Croix rivers, according to a United States Department of Transportation National Bridge Inventory database. On the scale used by federal authorities, zero denotes a bridge "beyond corrective action" while nine indicates one in excellent condition. For comparison, the Minneapolis bridge that collapsed had the following ratings: Deck-5, superstructure-4, substructure-6. A rating of four or below is considered structurally deficient. Interstate 94 Eastbound over the St.
As far as summer jobs go, Will Paul, Alex Zorman and Kong Moua don't have it too bad.
It wasn't a five-alarm fire -- or even a cat stuck up a tree -- that the convoy of Cottage Grove fire trucks rolling down 80th Street was after last Friday. Nope, just a homecoming. Cottage Grove volunteer firefighter and Minnesota National Guard Red Bull Brigade soldier Adam Pelton got a big, bright red escort down the city's main drag after 16 months in Iraq -- one that would've made any parade-going kid a bit jealous. "This was shocking," the 28-year-old said, standing with friends, family and neighbors that gathered to welcome him home Friday afternoon.
Cottage Grove City Council members last Wednesday approved a concept design for improvements to the northern portion of Hamlet Park in an effort to spruce up what Mayor Sandy Shiely called "an eyesore." The long, narrow northern section of the 112-acre park, squeezed between Hadley Avenue and West Point Douglas Road, will see significant changes under the plan unanimously approved at the July 18 meeting.
Revenues going into a charitable fund Cottage Grove has used in the past to help finance youth -- and community-oriented groups is shrinking fast, leaving City Council members searching for ways to continue the subsidies. The city's Charitable Gambling Fund has seen a "precipitous drop" in returns from pull-tab activity in recent years, according to city administrator Ryan Schroeder, putting disbursements for programs like matching funds given to the Jaycees for Fourth of July fireworks into question.
Construction will begin later this month on Cottage Grove roundabouts after the City Council narrowly voted Wednesday to move forward with the plan. By a 3-2 vote, the council awarded the $3.1 million contract to build the roundabouts at the Jamaica Avenue/Highway 61 interchange. The project is slated to be complete by Oct. 15. During construction, all lanes of Jamaica Avenue between East Point Douglas Road and West Point Douglas Road will close, an option Council members were not originally keen on.