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Supervisors take on road projects before season ends

Thomson Township board supervisors are taking a look at some township roads before winter begins. At its Oct. 7 meeting the board voted to pay for preparation work on Hillside Road so that it can be repaved by the end of 2021. Residents along the road petitioned for an assessment and came together to pay for the new road themselves, which is allowed under Minnesota statute 429.

The board decided to take on the cost of the preparation work since the project will ultimately benefit the township, not just the residents who live there. The final assessment and public hearing for the project will be held at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 26.

In other business, Logan Saline, the township’s road utility and maintenance supervisor, suggested that the township look at using some of its yearly blacktop maintenance funds to “mastic” patch some of the township roads. Mastic patching is a longer-term solution to repairing roads, using modified asphalt to fill cracks and potholes.

The township maintenance crew used this method to repair some roads last year and they held up against plows and cold temperatures, Saline said. The roads that can be repaired will depend on what the budget allows, and the most highly trafficked roads in the township will be looked at first.

Board members also voted to move forward with a geotechnical boring project for Ridge, Korby, and Stillmeadow roads. This project is to investigate the soil under the roads, to see if they need to be torn up and rebuilt or just repaved.

Additionally, the township’s engineering company, Advanced Engineering & Environmental Services, is moving forward with a sewer line rehabilitation project for the township. The board voted to move forward by advertising for bids for the project.

Also Thursday, township departments and other groups shared monthly reports, with the fire department and sheriff’s office both reporting a busy September.

The Esko Volunteer Fire Department has already responded to 260 calls this year and expects to end 2021 with more than 300. Chief Kyle Gustafson also reported a high turnout for the annual pancake breakfast, with approximately 650 meals served.

Deputy Randy Roberts reported 90 calls for the month of September, and noted his focus on slowing traffic around the school.

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