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Local

Long wait over as Geneva OKs contract

GENEVA – Geneva aldermen approved a construction agreement Monday for building the third level of the Third Street Commuter Parking Deck, which will provide an additional 180 parking spaces.

First at a special committee of the whole meeting, aldermen unanimously recommended approval of a $4.48 million construction agreement with Walsh Construction Company of Chicago, then they took final action at the regularly scheduled City Council meeting that followed.

Most of the cost is being funded by a grant from Metra, officials said.

“We have waited a long, long, long time for this,” Mayor Kevin Burns said.

“We should acknowledge our good friend [State] Rep. Tim Schmitz, [R-Batavia], our good friend former mayor Don DeWitte of St. Charles who served on the RTA board and others helped us, lobbied for this,” Burns said. “I would of course be remiss if I didn’t also recognize our city administrator, Mary McKittrick, who spent countless hours on the phone and sending emails asking, ‘What the heck is going on?’ ”

The city has been working with Metra, the RTA and Illinois Department of Transportation to secure grant funding for the third level of the existing parking deck, which has 360 spaces, officials said.

The grant agreement was first approved by the city council in June 2011. Walsh was the only bid received Jan. 14 for the project, officials said. 

Metra, the RTA  and IDOT also approved Walsh for the project, according to the bid documents.

The project’s funding has been in the city’s budget for four years, officials said.

City administrators said they will work to get temporary parking for parking deck commuters, PACE shuttle service from a temporary lot at First Baptist Church on South Street.

Officials said they also would work on logistics related to the construction as well as communicating with commuters, downtown businesses, visitors and residents.

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