- Associated Press - Tuesday, April 19, 2016

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) - City officials say reconstruction of the main east-west thoroughfare in central Council Bluffs will begin next year.

City Engineer Matt Cox said that it’ll take five to six years to completely rebuild a stretch of West Broadway at a cost of no more than $26 million. The project will include installing the street’s first storm sewer system.

“Adding a storm sewer system will improve driving conditions,” Cox said.

Council Bluffs will take over ownership of the street from Iowa’s Department of Transportation, which is giving the city $20 million for maintenance costs and future reconstruction, The Daily Nonpareil (https://bit.ly/1YFdUUK ) reports.

The city is expected to pay the remaining $6 million, Walsh said. He expects this money to come from the city’s capital improvement program.

Council Bluffs’ Water Works will pay for installation of a new water main, which hasn’t been rebuilt since 1881. Water Works executive director Doug Drummey said $250,000 is budgeted for the main replacement design work. The cost to install it will be several million dollars, which will come from water rates revenue.

“It’s quite obvious that water main has to be replaced in conjunction with reconstruction of West Broadway,” Drummey said.

Cox and Mayor Matt Walsh held a press conference Monday to discuss project updates before Tuesday evening’s public meeting on the plan. Cox said that public input is appreciated even though not much planning has been done.

“We’re not assuming we already have all the answers,” he said.

Walsh said that the street hasn’t been rebuilt in more than 65 years.

“A new, modern, attractive road surface will tell a good story about the future of Council Bluffs,” he said.

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Information from: The Daily Nonpareil, https://www.nonpareilonline.com

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