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Montevideo acquires site for storm shelter

MONTEVIDEO — City Council members in Montevideo approved a land transfer that will make it possible to build a storm shelter for residents in the Northdale Community Park area.

The action by council members on Monday allows the city to take ownership of the property at 1304 Benson Road from the city’s Economic Development Agency, according to City Manager Steve Jones. The EDA had previously acquired the property with $40,607 in financing from the Montevideo Community Development Corporation.

The EDA will repay one-half the loan amount to the Montevideo Community Development Corporation. The development corporation will essentially forgive the remainder.

The transfer of property will allow the city to obtain grant funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to build a safe house on the site.

The concrete structure is proposed to measure 20 feet by 40 feet and provide emergency shelter to 106 people. It will cost an estimated $125,000, based on preliminary designs, according to Angie Steinbach, EDA director.

The city would like to see the structure built this spring.

The structure would be opened whenever there are storm watches or warnings. Residents in the manufactured home park are currently instructed to seek shelter at the Chippewa County-Montevideo Hospital.

In other business, council members continued discussions on plans to build a new fire hall and upgrade the City Hall.  The city would like to bid the fire hall project for construction in 2014.

Tom Cherveny

Tom Cherveny is a regional and outdoor reporter with the West Central Tribune in Willmar, MN.

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