UNION — The City of Union will provide nearly $500,000 in matching funds for two infrastructure improvement projects.
The McBeth Street Sewer Rehabilitation Project involves the replacement of approximately 5,176 linear feet of 8-inch sanitary sewer lines.
A resolution approved by Union City Council Tuesday evening describes the system as “60 year old clay pipes of poor quality” that are “susceptible to leakage at joints, allowing inflow of storm water and infiltration of ground water” and that “these deficiencies have led to an inadequate sewer service for the McBeth area.”
To remedy this, the resolution states that the city has been awarded a $469,084 Community Development Block Grant through the Community Infrastructure Program. The grant will be used to help finance the upgrade of the McBeth Street system by lining the sewer system with cured-in-place pipe.
The CDBG program, however, requires local matching funds equal to at least 10 percent of the grant amount and additional funding to pay for costs which are not covered by the program.
The resolution further states that bids for the project were opened May 22, 2014 with a low bid of $740,702.
Council voted unanimously Tuesday to award the bid for the project to the low bidder, Layne Inliner of Charlotte, NC.
The resolution states that the original project budget was $494,484 — including matching funds allocated by the city — but that with the low bid coming in at $740,702, this leaves a shortfall of $246,218.
To cover that shortfall, the resolution states that the city would take the following steps:
• Transfer $150,246 in State Revolving Funds to the project from the Industrial Road Sewer Project which had experienced cost savings. The city contacted the State Revolving Funds staff about this and was told that the transfer would be permitted.
• Increase city funds allocated to the project from $129,900 to $194,956.
• At the direction of the SC Department of Commerce ask for an additional $30,000 in CDBG funds for the project.
The increased funding by the city will total $345,202.
Union Mill Village Phase III
Council also voted unanimously Tuesday to approve a resolution committing the city to providing $150,801 in local matching funds for the Union Mill Village Phase III Project.
The city is in the process of applying for a total of $500,000 in CDBG funds through the SC Department of Commerce which will be used to fund:
• Sewer line upgrades on portions of Erwin Street, off Main and N. Boyce Streets, Mill Avenue, Spring Street, Green Street, and Lybrand Street.
• The replacement of portions of sidewalks on Lybrand Street, Hicks Street, Lawson Avenue, and N. Boyce Street.
• Installation of handicap ramps on existing sidewalks at street crossing locations throughout the neighborhood.
• The demolition of six vacant and dilapidated structures.
• Installation of 28 new streetlights on existing utility poles.
The project is expected to cost a total of $650,801.
In a related matter, council also voted unanimously to approve the city’s Priority Capital Improvements list at the request of the Catawba Regional Council of Governments.
The Priority Capital Improvements list is part of the Catawba Region’s Comprehensive Economic Development Strategies.
In a letter to Mayor Harold Thompson, Catawba Regional Senior Planner Mike Vead stated that “one of the primary purposes of this update is to keep the region eligible for EDA funding. One of the key components of the CEDS is the Priority Capital Improvements list for each local government.”
Vead’s letter included the city’s Priority Capital Improvements list for council’s review and approval.
One of the projects included in the list is the construction of “a recreational lake at the confluence of Fairforest Creek and the Tyger River to promote additional recreation and housing opportunities and an alternative drinking water source.”
The list also includes a total of 15 priority capital improvements within the city in three areas.
• Upgrade water and sewer systems where appropriate;
• Continue Union’s downtown revitalization efforts;
• Expand and upgrade the City of Union’s electric and natural gas distribution systems;
• Upgrade office and retail space in the downtown Union downtown area;
• Promote job training initiatives including the expansion of the Union Quickjobs Center; and improve the regional transportation system.
• Continue improvements in the Union Mill Village, Standpipe, and McBeth Street neighborhood (drainage, street work, and housing rehabilitation);
• Plan improvements for future revitalization of neighborhoods within the City of Union;
• Make sidewalk repairs throughout the city;
• Provide affordable housing; address substandard and elderly housing; and
• Continue street paving improvements to city roads.
• Construct an Arts and Cultural Center;
• Improve the farmer’s market area;
• Acquire the old train property;
• Clean-up the old Norfolk-Southern boneyard; and
• Improve and expand recreational and health care facilities.