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Paving project planned for Main Street Ottertail

Ottertail’s Main Street will be getting a new look next year.

 After years of budgeting for street repairs, the city is now planning on completing blacktop work on either side of the state highway that runs through the “old town” part of Ottertail.

 “We would like to start getting bids in place by this December,” Ottertail City Clerk/Treasurer Elaine Hanson announced at the July 17 meeting of the Ottertail City Council.

 The plan is to start the blacktop work at Lake Avenue and continue west to Maple Avenue, spanning the stretch of Main Street that includes several businesses and is frequently used by pedestrians. The city expressed a willingness to pay for the blacktop work, provided a permit is approved. The Minnesota Department of Transportation has instructed the city to draft a letter defining what the specific plans are for the project.

 Downtown improvements may also include some sidewalk work in front of the Williams Company Store. After the paving project is complete, the city will then look into diagonal striping for parking along Main Street.

 Several other projects are also underway in Ottertail, including the Pelican Bay pier project and flag displays within the city.

 Hanson informed members of the council that the handicapped accessible pier planned on Pelican Bay will soon be in place. The pier is projected to arrive on July 27. Specs for the blacktop pad for handicapped accessible parking are being finalized at this time.

 The Ottertail Rod and Gun Club has approved the purchase of 30 new nylon American flags, along with the hardware necessary to secure the flags on electrical poles. These flags will be added to the collection the city already has. Discussion has also been started about creating a flag display by the town’s otter statue. It was suggested that several of the city’s nonprofit groups could join forces to work on developing the details for the flag display project.

 In other city news, Loren Hawes has officially accepted the position of maintenance/zoning coordinator for the city of Ottertail. Hawes will replace Lee Sherman, who is retiring from the position.

 Election judges for the city have also been appointed for the 2014 state primary and general elections. Co-head judges will be Diane Sherman and Elaine Hanson. Willard Sanders, Sharon Fleischauer, Linda Martin, Kathy Grobeck and Shari Wheeler will be serving as judges.

 Candidates may file with the city clerk at Ottertail City Hall between 8 a.m. on Tuesday, July 29 and 5 p.m. on Tuesday, August 12.