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April 17, 2021

2/15/2021 4:00:00 PM
Wyoming sees 2021 street work feasibility report, OK's hybrid for P.D.

The Wyoming street improvements projects feasibility study was accepted by city council members last week, with member Dennis Schilling absent. The work will go out for bids next and opening of bids should be in April/May, council was advised.

Street work won’t begin until late summer 2021 and is estimated around $1.8 million. There is sanitary sewer work scheduled ahead of this, earlier in the summer.

Wyoming City Engineer Mark Erichson showed the area to be under reconstruction as mostly in the vintage downtown involving: 263rd, 266th, 267th, Feriday, Forli, Finley, Foxboro and part of Glen Oak. (See box) He mentioned there have been informational sessions on-line with affected citizens and “...we’ve had pretty good success” with participation.

There will be a required information meeting February 18 at 6 p.m. The codes to get into the Zoom session are on the city website. For those who need an option there are e mail addresses and phone numbers for connecting with officials to make comments known.

Assessments will cover a small portion of the total cost, or 20 percent, under Wyoming City policy. The estimated per unit assessment will be $2,947, according to Engineer Erichson.

The tentative date for the improvements public hearing is March 2.

On the website www.wyomingmn.org look for the “departments” header and click on that word and find the listing for street maintenance under “residents”.

Erichson said the team calculates 121 assessable units in the work zone. Properties considered to be assessable must have access from one of the streets being worked on. Simply having a lot fronting or touching a project area road is not enough.

Erichson said there’s no “wholesale ditch grading” necessary and curb and gutter for the most part is not included, although there are “isolated” areas of curb. Hydrant replacement and gate valve work is being done, paid for by the city as a whole. “Quite poor” is how he describes the roads in most of the work zones.

In another development from last week’s City Council meeting; Public Safety Director and Police Chief Paul Hoppe got the authorization to acquire a hybrid vehicle for police.

It is a special build Ford Explorer pursuit model and runs $43,197. According to an automotive article on-line Ford reports that of 8,000 pursuit vehicles ordered this year, 1,100 were hybrid, so this is still a relatively unique use for this model.

According to Hoppe the department projects a savings of $7,750 based on fuel use (both idling and in motion) over 100,000 miles alone. The hybrid shuts off the gas engine at idle and cop cars spend typically 6,000 hours in idle over 100,000 mile lifespan.

Chief Hoppe added, that the horsepower, speed and acceleration are as good or better than traditional law enforcement vehicles. (An automotive magazine article online reporting on a test drive clocked the top speed at 137 mph.)

Wyoming P.D. generally cycles vehicles out —or transitions them to the fire program —as part of the fleet management strategy at 100,000 miles.

Chief Hoppe tells the Press he plans to watch the vehicle’s reliability, costs, over the coming year and “If it performs as expected transition the fleet” to hybrid over the years.

Looking at the big picture, Wyoming has a green initiative policy underpinning many decisions, and this seemed like a logical thing. Chief Hoppe hopes this vehicle proves that hybrids can be the “next generation” for law enforcement fleets. “I think Wyoming is always looking for better ways to serve our community with new and innovative ideas that help us provide exceptional service at a reasonable cost,” he concluded.

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