Construction start on $1.1 million track-side canopy, platform delayed

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 2, 2009

By Mark Wineka
Some final administrative items have delayed the construction start of a $1.1 million track-side canopy and platform at Salisbury Station.
Dan Mikkelson, land management and development director for the city, reported Tuesday on some insurance questions and agreements that need to be worked out before construction can begin.
At its Sept. 16 meeting, Salisbury City Council is expected to consider license/easement agreements with the North Carolina Railroad Co. and Historic Salisbury Foundation.
The canopy and platform to be built will be located on properties owned by those two entities, but the improvements themselves will be owned by the city of Salisbury.
The city would have license/easement agreements to maintain the canopy and platform on those respective properties.
Council authorized a construction contract in July. Under terms of a municipal agreement, the N.C. Department of Transportation will pay for 90 percent of the project; the city, 10 percent.
In another matter, council has approved budget amendments to purchase $476,500 worth of radio improvements.
Out of that total, $107,316 will go toward buying 66 new frontline radios for the Fire Department.
The waterproof, more rugged Motorola models will replace existing portable radios in the department.
The city is purchasing the updated models after having some communication problems in the March 7 fire at Salisbury Millwork in which two firefighters died.
Also, the city will pay $124,252 to add digital capabilities for 249 radios owned and used by Rowan County and other government entities in the county.
It is more efficient for the city to order these replacement radios with the digital upgrade than for each individual unit to go for the upgrade, Management Services Director John Sofley said.
The city will be reimbursed by the various government entities for each unit, he said.
With the remaining $244,932, the city will replace 19-year-old Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) equipment for Salisbury-Rowan Utilities.
The SCADA equipment, used at 14 different sites, will monitor and control tanks, pumps and wastewater pump stations.The funds will come from the utility department’s capital replacement fund.
Over the past 18 months, the city has been negotiating with Nextel to trade some of the city’s 800 mhz radio frequencies for replacement frequencies. As part of that contract, approved in May, a significant number of radios owned by the city were replaced by Nextel but not those approved Tuesday.
In other city business, council:
– Will hold a public hearing Sept. 16 on a proposed Street Festival and Special Events Ordinance.
City staff has researched similar ordinances in Mount Airy, Concord and Charlotte to provide a framework for the proposal. An officer with the N.C. Alcohol Law Enforcement Division provided technical assistance.
Planning staff, Downtown Salisbury Inc. and the Salisbury Police Department joined in writing the document, recently endorsed by Downtown Salisbury Inc.
Permits would be required for both street festivals and special events through the Police Department. The permit application would have to include a map showing places for a stage (if necessary), concessions, tables, seating, parking, locations where a street would have to be blocked off and areas where beer and/or wine would be served.
– Appointed Bill Wagoner to the Planning Board.
– Passed a resolution, at the county’s request, to enforce a Rowan County ordinance prohibiting sex offenders from entering the Salisbury branch of Rowan Public Library.