Savanna-Sabula bridge work continues

Construction crews are  hard at work on the new Savanna-Sabula Bridge. The bridge over the Mississippi is expected to  be completed  in fall 2017.  MSP photo by  Kelly Gerlach
Construction crews are hard at work on the new Savanna-Sabula Bridge. The bridge over the Mississippi is expected to be completed in fall 2017. MSP photo by Kelly Gerlach

By KELLY GERLACH

News Editor

kgerlach@mspress.net

Construction is on track with minimal traffic impact on the Savanna-Sabula Bridge.

The estimated $80.6 million project for a new bridge spanning the Mississippi River between Sabula and Savanna, Illinois, started in early March and is on track for completion in November 2017, according to Chris Aude, resident engineer for the Illinois Department of Transportation. 

Primary contractor Kraemer North America LLC is constructing a new 2,462-foot tied-arch span about 100 feet south, or downstream, of the present bridge, which carries U.S. 52 and Iowa and Iowa-Illinois 64 across the river to link the two riverfront communities.

The rough outline of the new bridge is already starting to take shape only hundreds of feet from the existing span. Kraemer is building the first of four piers that will bear the structure weight on the Iowa side.

Sub-contractor Case is drilling shafts and permanent casings for piers 6 and 7 heading across the river toward the Illinois side.

 

The bridge will have 11 piers, more than half the 20 piers that

 

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Two intersections may open early

This aerial photo by George Turpin shows Maquoketa’s downtown street construction project as of May 30. Captured from  the south looking north, the photo shows an excavated North Main Street and a paved portion of East Quarry Street.
This aerial photo by George Turpin shows Maquoketa’s downtown street construction project as of May 30. Captured from the south looking north, the photo shows an excavated North Main Street and a paved portion of East Quarry Street.

By DOUGLAS MELVOLD

Staff Writer

dmelvold@mspress.net

Two downtown Maquoketa intersections that have been closed to traffic for several weeks because of the Main Street reconstruction project may be opened to traffic sooner than projected, officials said this week.

Paving of the 100 block of West Quarry Street began this week and is expected to be completed next week, project officials said Thursday morning at the weekly progress report meeting at Maquoketa City Hall.

The intersections of East Quarry and North Olive streets, and West Quarry and North Second streets, may be opened after the paving of Quarry is completed and the concrete has sufficiently cured, said Dan Schlueter of IIW Engineers & Surveyors, the project inspector.

Paving of the curb on the south side of West Quarry began Wednesday, Schlueter said. He said paving of the two-block length of Quarry, between Olive and Second, is expected to be completed by next week.

 

“So I would think at some point in the next two weeks he may open up the Olive and Second Street intersections, which will help traffic flow,” Schlueter said. He was referring to Lucas Kluever of KE Flatwork, the general contractor, who didn’t attend the meeting.

 

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Old Mill factors into construction plans

Don Schwenker, Maquoketa Mayor
Don Schwenker, Maquoketa Mayor

By DOUGLAS MELVOLD

Staff Writer

dmelvold@mspress.net

A half-block of street and sidewalk resurfacing and utility replacement may be added to Maquoketa’s downtown reconstruction project.

The Maquoketa City Council last week gave preliminary approval to a proposal to extend the improvements on East Pleasant Street from halfway between South Main and South Olive Streets to the intersection of Pleasant and Olive.

The council approved the preliminary plan on a 4-0 vote. Council members Josh Collister, Amy Moore and Cory Simonson were absent.

 

Mayor Don Schwenker said city officials 

 

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Farmers Market up and running

Jack Schueller, 2, could not wait to sink his teeth into a fresh strawberry his mother, Abby Schueller, purchased at the Maquoketa Farmers Market Tuesday.
Jack Schueller, 2, could not wait to sink his teeth into a fresh strawberry his mother, Abby Schueller, purchased at the Maquoketa Farmers Market Tuesday.

By KELLY GERLACH

News Editor

kgerlach@mspress.net

The early bird gets the strawberry at the Maquoketa Farmers Market. 

It’s a common rule of thumb there: customers almost have to be in line about 15 minutes before the 4 p.m. market opening to ensure they walk away with the succulent, red berries.

Vendors are not allowed to sell any products before the 4 p.m. market bell, but that doesn’t stop people from standing in line and eyeing the merchandise.

Tuesday was no different. About a dozen strawberry-loving market-goers waited patiently in line for at least 10 minutes, eyeballing the seeded berries tucked pertly into one- and two-quart containers.

 

But Dave Kendall, the man they were waiting for and owner of 

 

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USPS says no to temporary city hall office

A customer posts letters at the mail drop box located behind the Maquoketa Post Office Monday afternoon.
A customer posts letters at the mail drop box located behind the Maquoketa Post Office Monday afternoon.

By DOUGLAS MELVOLD

Staff Writer

dmelvold@mspress.net

The U.S. Postal Service has said no to a proposal to open a temporary postal station at Maquoketa City Hall for the convenience of patrons who struggle to reach the post office during the downtown reconstruction project.

In a brief statement, a postal service spokesman said establishing such a facility would have required “significant advance planning and operational changes.”

As the downtown project was getting underway earlier this spring, staff members of the Maquoketa post office proposed a temporary postal station be established at Maquoketa City Hall for patrons’ convenience.

City officials said an office formerly used by the now defunct Maquoketa Housing Authority could be made available.

 

 

City staff members made the office ready for use by the post office. The Maquoketa City Council voted unanimously to give the postal service temporary use of the office. No rental fee was mentioned.

 

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Voter to choose candidates Tuesday

By DOUGLAS MELVOLD

Staff Writer

dmelvold@mspress.net

Jackson County’s Democrats and Republicans will join those from across Iowa next week to nominate their party’s candidates for this fall’s general election.

Polls for the statewide primary will be open Tuesday from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. at 16 precinct locations (see sidebar  on page 9 for polling locations.)

Jackson County Auditor M. Joell Deppe said Wednesday that preparations for the election are running smoothly. Early voting is continuing. She said 104 ballots had either been cast in her office or requested to be mailed out as of late Wednesday.

Deppe’s office will be open Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. for early voting.

She noted that registered voters may change parties at the polls, if they wish.

Jackson County will help settle three contested races—two on the Democratic ballot and one on the GOP slate.

Four Democrats are vying for the nomination to a U.S. Senate seat and the right to challenge incumbent Sen. Charles Grassley.

 

They are:

 

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 6/25/16

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