By ERIC X. VICCARO
Ste. Genevieve businessman Greg Hilbert pitched the city the idea of a connector road from Blain Street to an industrial site with a new tenant during a board of aldermen work session last Thursday.
“Buchheits is moving into the industrial site along Market Street,” said Ste. Genevieve City Administrator Happy Welch in a memorandum to the board before the session.
Welch noted the connecting road would be close to United States Highway 61, which would help divert heavy truck traffic from using Market and 10th Streets. It would also eliminate opposing semi traffic at the intersection of Market, U.S. 61 and Mississippi Lime Company.
Hilbert proposed a connecting road between 240- to 270-feet long, and 28- to 30-feet wide. It was mentioned the roadway would be about the same size as Coyne Street.
Aaldermen were presented two proposed bids on the project from Vern Bauman Contracting Company in the sum of $75,096 and from Jokerst, Inc. at $81.937.42.
Both companies proposed using six- to eight-inch asphalt with 540-square-feet of two-inch curb installed. The project price could change due to fluctuations in liquid asphalt market, Bauman Contracting noted on their bid.
Hilbert said work already has been performed on site, mainly in the form of excavation. Utilities have been in place.
“We are ready for pavement, curb and gutter,” Hilbert noted. Curb and gutter would help control stormwater, a hot-button issue in Ste. Genevieve.
Hilbert then discussed the economic impact Buchheit now provides in Ste. Genevieve – Carriage House Cabinets in the front of the building and a logistics company in the rear.
The facilities will average 30-50 trucks per day combined, with receiving hours listed from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Proposed future factory expansion three years from now would double the amount of current truck traffic, it was reported on a specifics sheet.
Aldermen began discussions, with Ward 4 Alderwoman Ashley Armbruster stating, paraphrasing, the city is having trouble financing street projects as it is.
Ward 2’s Bob Donovan thanked Hilbert for helping transform a formerly “blighted” area.
However, Donovan said he was hesitant to support the project due to the cost, noting the city is having trouble catching up with other issues – including other streets on the 2022 repaving list as well as stormwater.