• Wed May 02 2007
  • Posted May 2, 2007
Councilman Jim Rixner proposed the controversial pedestrian/trail bridge over the Big Sioux River could be built upriver rather than connecting to the Dakota Dunes trail system. Because City Manager Paul Eckert missed Monday's meeting due to illness, the council deferred action for another week on an agreement with the Dakota Dunes Community Improvement District. Two weeks ago, the council postponed a vote because Councilmen Brent Hoffman and Rixner wanted more information about who would operate and maintain the bridge, while Mayor Craig Berenstein had concerns about liability issues to the city should someone file an injury claim. Another issue that caused some consternation was the Dunes CID's requirement the bridge be locked at night. Terry Hoffman, parks and recreation manager (and no relation to the councilman), said city crews already close city cemeteries and Bacon Creek Park at night and could add the bridge to the closure list. Rixner suggested the trail cross the river upstream into North Sioux City and the trail could run on the dike. The trail then could connect to Stone Park and the railroad museum along the river by Iowa Highway 12. Terry Hoffman said city staff studied upstream locations for the bridge, but the construction costs would be greater because the river is wider. Rixner replied, 'It's conceivable that you could come up with an alternate. ... No one's presented the issue to North Sioux City." In answer to Councilman Jason Geary's questions about the deadline to use federal funds on the project, Terry Hoffman said the grant must be spent by Oct. 26.

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