Fort Dodge council approves new trail link

Another section of the Fort Dodge trail system will be built as a result of a contract awarded Monday by the Fort Dodge City Council.

The new trail will extend south along South 32nd Street from the Almost Home animal shelter at 725 S. 32nd St. to 15th Avenue South. It will then extend west along 15th Avenue South to Oleson Park.

“It’s going to help us complete the loop around the city,” said Randy Kuhlman, the chairman of the Trails Advisory Committee.

“We really believe that once this is done, Fort Dodge will be one of the top cities in Iowa for trail systems,” he added.

The council on Monday hired Wicks Construction, of Decorah, to build the trail at a cost of $769,885.26. Councilman Dean Hill was absent from the otherwise unanimous vote.

Other bidders for the job were Jensen Builders Ltd., of Fort Dodge, $831,507; Howrey Construction, Rockwell City, $856,619.25; Absolute Concrete, Slater, $869,593.14; Castor Construction, Fort Dodge, $943,135; and Godbersen-Smith Construction, Ida Grove, $932,375.

In other business, the council committed $38,000 as matching funds for a $217,000 housing grant being sought by the Heart of Iowa Regional Housing Trust Fund.

The Heart of Iowa Regional Housing Trust Fund includes Hamilton and Webster counties. It is eligible to receive money from the Iowa Finance Authority that will be used to rehabilitate homes in the two counties.

Councilman Kim Alstott said 90 percent of the people who will benefit from the housing money are retirees living on Social Security and the other 10 percent are disabled.

He said using the money will keep people in their own homes and improve neighborhoods.

A total of $54,000 in matching funds from the two counties is required.