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New road gets Dodger Drive label

Fort Dodge officials also hoping to complete several repairs to Hydroelectric Dam

November 6, 2012
By BILL SHEA ( , Messenger News

Dodger Drive is the newest street in Fort Dodge.

The City Council on Monday voted to give that name to the road south of the middle school now under construction.

The name was recommended by Fort Dodge Community School District officials based on input from students. The school district's sports teams are known as the Dodgers.

The new street extends from the intersection of Sixth Avenue North and 29th Street in the west to 32nd Street in the east. The school district paid for its construction.

It may be opened to traffic shortly, but the driveway that leads from Dodger Drive to the school will be blocked.

Usually, naming a street requires three votes of the council. However, council members decided Monday to dispense with that procedure and made the name official on the first vote. Councilman Robert ''Barney'' Patterson was absent from the otherwise unanimous vote.

In other business, the council directed City Manager David Fierke to find an engineering firm that could be hired to design some repairs to the Hydroelectric Dam. Mayor Matt Bemrich said he hopes a proposal will be presented for council action during the Nov. 19 meeting.

City officials have been contemplating ways to prevent water from flowing through the broken gates of the dam. The cost of such repairs was previously estimated at $45,000 to $50,000, and Fierke said the price tag could be higher if a crane is needed.

''I don't think there's a cheap solution out there,'' he said.

Bemrich said the cost will only be higher if the city waits to take action, and added that the low water level in the Des Moines River is creating an opportunity to work on the dam.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has already given its approval for dam repair work, according to Fierke, He said approval from the state Department of Natural Resources is still pending.

Also on Monday, the council approved new flood plain maps and regulations regarding building in the flood plain. The documents replace those written in 1978 .

''The changes, I would say, are fairly minor,'' said Angela Torres, the associate city planner.

The council on Monday also sold an undeveloped right-of-way originally meant for an extension of C Street to Jim and Betty Hartsell of 729 C St. for $50.



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