City of Vienna, county reach bridge project agreement

By Colin Willard, Advocate Staff Writer
Posted 3/27/24

VIENNA — Maries County Presiding Commissioner Victor Stratman came to the March 4 City of Vienna meeting to discuss the bridge project on Maries Road 213 over Fly Creek, which abuts city …

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City of Vienna, county reach bridge project agreement


VIENNA — Maries County Presiding Commissioner Victor Stratman came to the March 4 City of Vienna meeting to discuss the bridge project on Maries Road 213 over Fly Creek, which abuts city property. Preliminary onsite work began last month.

Stratman told city officials that the county is requesting for all surrounding property owners to donate the right of way for an easement. For the city, that would be about 0.29 acres with 0.15 acres on the north side of the bridge and 0.14 acres on the south side. He said the new bridge will be a little wider and not have a weight limit like the bridge does now.

Utilities Superintendent Shon Westart said the easement would not interfere with the city’s fence, so he did not see a problem with it.

“I think any improvements are good,” Mayor Tim Schell said.

The aldermen voted to approve the donation of easements during the bridge construction.

Stratman also asked if building a temporary crossing to lessen the detour for residents affected by the construction would be a possibility though he said he thought it was a bad idea. He had concerns about traffic delaying construction.

“I understand it’s going to be a hardship,” he said. “But it’ll probably be about a two-month build, I think.”

Westart said he would want to talk to the engineers about it, but he did not think it was possible. He had concerns about vehicles on the berm surrounding city lagoons. He added that he never expected the site to have a pass through.

“I think (no pass through) is a good idea for the sake of safety if nothing else,” Alderman Brenda Davis said.

Later in the meeting, Westart talked about a new project the city is working on in response to a new lead and copper rule from the Missouri Department of Natural Resources (MoDNR). The city will identify the materials used in all connections to city meters.

Westart said when the city redid its system about 10 years ago, it was fortunate to have no lead. However, this time the utilities department will need to check all connections within the city. He proposed that the city offer a discount on water bills to property owners who can identify the material used in the plumbing of their property that leads into the building. The offer would also apply to property owners who take the time to call City Hall to set up an appointment for city staff to come check the plumbing.

Schell asked what will happen if a property has lead connectors.

Westart said the city just has to pass the information along to MoDNR. He did not expect lead to be a problem in town because the area never had a lead mine like other parts of the state.

City Clerk Karen Dudenhoeffer suggested leaving notices on all the doors in town or having the summer help call residents to let them know about the potential discount.

Alderman Rita Juergens asked how many the city would have to check.

Westart estimated that the city would need to check about 350 properties.

Also at the meeting, Dudenhoeffer said that Schell had signed a memorandum of agreement between the city and the Maries County Fair Board saying that the city will help administer a $500,000 grant from the Missouri Department of Agriculture (MDA) to update some of the fairground facilities. MDA has received the grant and the city has established a bank account for the funds.

During the February city meeting, Maries County Fair Board Vice President Shelby Jones told city officials that the board plans to put the money toward improvements to the electricity at the fairgrounds, building a permanent pavilion with office space and other upgrades depending on available funds. The fair board has until October to allocate the money.