The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Top News

January 24, 2013

City of Clinton looks at ‘green’ project

CLINTON — City of Clinton officials have their sights set on a loan from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources that will allow the city to create $700,000 of green infrastructure in sync with another sewer project on the city's north side at no extra cost.

The loan would be available through the Iowa DNR and tacked on to a $7 million state revolving fund loan the city has already secured for a pump station at 25th Avenue North as part of the long-term control plan that is mandated by the Iowa DNR and Environmental Protection Agency.  

“We came to the council a few years ago with the long term control plan and all the projects we’re going to have to do and as part of that we know we need to look at alternative funding sources and also storm water quality and not just sanitary storm sewer separation projects,” City Engineer Jason Craft said.  

Officials can apply for the competitive loan from the Iowa DNR that will add up to 10 percent in principal of the SRF loan in order for the city to create green infrastructure that will improve water quality. Craft said when the $700,000 of funding is added to the loan, the interest rate is lowered, meaning there is no extra cost to complete the green projects, which in addition to improving water quality will also begin some of the work required for projects further down the line in the long-term control plan.  

Along with the 25th Avenue North pumping station, the city plans also to complete sewer separation on 25th Avenue North, although this project will come later. With the pump station and sewer separation, the city aims to lower the combined sewer overflow events that potentially release waste and other pollutants into the river from 25 events per year to a maximum of six. Craft said the city also needs to improve water quality through smaller storms, all of which could be assisted with the green infrastructure.

“What we've tried to do is to brainstorm a project that will not only just construct $700,000 worth of green infrastructure somewhere in town, but we wanted to come up with something that had many many benefits and could achieve some of these goals and could construct some of these projects that we know we're going to have to construct anyway,” Craft said.

The green infrastructure includes permeable brick streets, parking spaces and crosswalks, green alleys and bio-retention cells. The latter requires digging up 3 to 4 feet of earth, putting in a sand filtration layers and planting plants that will help treat storm water before it is conveyed into a storm sewer system and then into the river.  

“We looked into some of the best green infrastructure practices that we could think of to help achieve these goals and help us have a favorable chance at getting the $700,000 sponsored project that we desire,” Craft said.

These projects would also allow the city to create a smaller pump station, create a less expensive storm sewer and delay the sewer separation at 25th Avenue North.

Craft prepared a map for the City Services Committee to examine Wednesday that initially places these projects along Main Avenue from Garfield to Second Street, but will be open for public input. If the projects were completed there, it would essentially create a streetscape for Lyons and Main Avenue, Craft said.    

“It's a win, win,” Interim City Administrator Jessica Kinser said. “Given that the actual loan is in that area, it makes sense.”

The City Services Committee supported the project, moving it to the Committee of the Whole for the entire council to discuss. If the City Council chooses to pursue the project and the loan is awarded, construction of the green infrastructure could be as soon as the spring of 2014.

1
Text Only
Top News
  • Amid Russian warning, Ukraine's in a security bind

    Ukraine's highly publicized goal to recapture police stations and government buildings seized by pro-Russia forces in the east produced little action on the ground Wednesday but ignited foreboding words from Moscow.

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov warned that Russia would mount a firm response if its citizens or interests come under attack in Ukraine. Although he did not specifically say Russia would launch a military attack, his comments bolstered wide concern that Russia could use any violence in eastern Ukraine as a pretext for sending in troops.

    April 23, 2014

  • UN seeks probe of alleged chlorine gas in Syria

    The U.N. Security Council called for an investigation Wednesday into reports of alleged chlorine gas use in some Syrian towns, causing deaths and injuries.

    Nigeria's U.N. Ambassador U. Joy Ogwu, the current council president, said the allegations were raised during a closed-door council meeting following a briefing Wednesday by Sigrid Kaag, who heads the mission charged with destroying Syria's chemical weapons.

    April 23, 2014

  • A 'wearable robot' helps her walk again

    Science is about facts, numbers, laws and formulas. To be really good at it, you need to spend a lot of time in school. But science is also about something more: dreaming big and helping people.

    April 23, 2014

  • Justin Bieber apologizes for Japan war shrine trip

    Justin Bieber apologized Wednesday to those he offended by visiting a Japanese war shrine, saying he thought it was a beautiful site and only a place of prayer.

    The Yasukuni Shrine in central Tokyo enshrines 2.5 million war dead, including Japan's 14 convicted war criminals, and operates a war museum that defends Japan's wartime aggression. It is a flashpoint between Japan and its neighbors that see the shrine as distinct from other Shinto-style establishments mainly honoring gods of nature. China and South Korea in particular see Yasukuni as a symbol of Japan's past militarism and consider Japanese officials' visits there as a lack of understanding or remorse over wartime history.

    April 23, 2014

  • Internet TV case: Justices skeptical, concerned

    Grappling with fast-changing technology, Supreme Court justices debated Tuesday whether they can protect the copyrights of TV broadcasters to the shows they send out without strangling innovations in the use of the internet.

    The high court heard arguments in a dispute between television broadcasters and Aereo Inc., which takes free television signals from the airwaves and charges subscribers to watch the programs on laptop computers, smartphones and even their large-screen televisions. The case has the potential to bring big changes to the television industry.

    April 23, 2014

  • Cuba is running out of condoms

    The newest item on Cuba's list of dwindling commodities is condoms, which are now reportedly in short supply. In response, the Cuban government has approved the sale of expired condoms.

    April 23, 2014

  • The waffle taco's biggest enemy isn't McDonald's. It's consumer habits.

    Gesturing to Taco Bell, Thompson said McDonald's had "not seen an impact relative to the most recent competitor that entered the [breakfast] space," and that new competition would only make McDonald's pursue breakfast more aggressively.

    April 23, 2014

  • Soldier convicted in WikiLeaks case gets new name

    An Army private convicted of leaking classified documents to WikiLeaks won an initial victory Wednesday to living as a woman when a Kansas judge granted a petition to change her name to Chelsea Elizabeth Manning.

    The decision clears the way for official changes to Manning's military records, but does not compel the military to treat the soldier previously known as Bradley Edward Manning as a woman.

    April 23, 2014

  • First lady announces one-stop job site for vets

    To help veterans leaving the military as it downsizes, the government on Wednesday started a one-stop job-shopping website for them to create resumes, connect with employers and become part of a database for companies to mine.

    April 23, 2014

  • Schultz deputy lost duties, kept pay

    Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz, who is running for Congress as a budget-cutting conservative, allowed his top aide to keep collecting a $126,000 annual salary for months after deciding to eliminate his job, The Associated Press has learned.

    Schultz decided in May 2012 to cut the office's chief deputy position held for 17 months by Jim Gibbons, a former Iowa State wrestling coach and Republican congressional candidate, under a restructuring that ultimately saved money. But rather than dismiss Gibbons quickly as he did to four career workers laid off that summer, Schultz took unusual steps that kept his political appointee on the payroll through the end of the year.

    April 23, 2014

AP Video