David Little covers the Willmar City Council, Willmar Municipal Utilities and other city news.
- Member for
- 4 years 7 months
WILLMAR -- A plan to guide development of bicycle and pedestrian trails in Willmar is now an official part of the city's comprehensive land use plan. The comprehensive land use plan, updated in 2009, cites the need for work in the areas of trails and pedestrian uses and that's what the bicycle and pedestrian plan accomplishes, says Bruce Peterson, the city's director of planning and development services. The plan addresses the needs of pedestrians and bicyclists, and calls for a local transportation system that complements development and provides for bicycle and pedestrian access to places
The 9/11 attacks stunned America, and the country has not been the same since then, says a local pastor who worked with families of military members. "I've said many times the terrorists accomplished exactly what they wanted to do. They upset the economy, this country, the world,'' said Dean Johnson of Willmar, a Lutheran pastor and retired brigadier general in the chaplaincy program of the Army National Guard. The United States responded by launching the War on Terror. Security measures were increased at home and armed forces were sent into Iraq and Afghanistan.
Volunteers in a local organization understand that the best support they can give deployed service members is to help their families back home. Whether it's delivering meals, mowing lawns or painting a house, the goal of HomeFront Connection is to meet the needs of families, connect them to the community and its resources, and develop community awareness of the needs and sacrifices of area service members. HomeFront Connection was started in 2008 by Kammy Nelson. She serves as coordinator of the organization's leadership team.
WILLMAR -- Residents of the city and surrounding area will have a chance to dispose of batteries, appliances, electronics and more during "Going Green,'' a cleanup-your-city-and-recycling-day Saturday. Organizers say many items will be accepted free of charge.
WILLMAR -- In 2005, the Minnesota Design Team held two weekend community meetings. One weekend focused on Kandiyohi County and the second weekend focused on the city of Willmar. All participants chose downtown Willmar as the focus for restoration and renaissance. The Willmar Design Center was formed and developed the mission of "restoring the heart of the city.'' Since 2005, the City Council has been financially supporting the Design Center.
WILLMAR -- A structure designed to help Willmar comply with state wastewater standards in the 1980s has been removed from a county ditch just southwest of the city because the structure was no longer needed and was falling apart. About 25 years ago, the cascade effluent discharge structure, as it was called, was built and placed by the city in County Ditch 46 near the intersection of 30th Street and 30th Avenue Southwest. The city had received permission from Kandiyohi County in the early 1980s to discharge treated wastewater from the old plant through a force main into Ditch 46, which flows
WILLMAR -- The Willmar City Council will hold a public hearing on Sept. 6 to consider adopting a plan of ideas to extend and improve the city's biking and walking trails. The plan's goal is to have a trail and pedestrian-friendly community, according to Matthew Johnson, community development director for the Mid-Minnesota Development Commission in Willmar. The city's Community Education and Recreation Department took the lead in preparing the planning process and hired Mid-Minnesota to write the plan.
WILLMAR -- Reconstruction of four neighborhood streets severely damaged by frost boils should begin in late August or early September now that the Willmar City Council has approved the assessment rate for the work. Following a public hearing Monday, the council approved the assessment rate of $59.76 per foot against benefited properties along the streets. The rate is the same as the rate previously adopted by the council for other street reconstruction this year. The four streets were added to the contract the city previously approved with Duininck Inc.
WILLMAR -- Some people may believe the current mix of on-street parking, municipal parking lots and small private parking lots is adequate to meet the needs of Willmar's downtown businesses and customers right now. But the hypothetical question could be: What would people like downtown Willmar to be 20 years from now and does the current mix of parking fit that criteria? That's the question a long-range downtown parking need assessment could answer, the Willmar City Council's Community Development Committee was told Thursday afternoon. Steve Renquist, executive director of the Kandiyohi Cou
WILLMAR -- Most Willmar City Council members don't favor ending the local option sales tax early even though the Willmar Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce believes they should. The tax approved by voters went into effect in 2006 and expires on Dec. 31, 2012.