Tonawanda News —
Nickerson said he, City Engineer Dale Marshall and the mayor’s assistant, Robert Welch, contacted dozens of engineers over the summer from the giant multinational company and pushed through negotiations.
Tuesday evening was a culmination of years of jostling, when the common council voted unanimously to approve a supplemental engineering agreement and authorization to move ahead with easement plans. The city, though, says there’s still a way to go.
“Once the contract is signed by the mayor my office will have a closing and acquire that permanent easement,” Nickerson said. “From there the certification is going to have to be signed. Once that is signed it goes to the DOT for review and hopefully shortly after that they will authorize the allocation of funds and we’ll be sending it out to bid. But when the mayor signs the contract it’s set in stone.”
Marshall said he also has to meet with federal regulators to discuss another 0.12-acre area still designated as a wetland, though he expects to come to terms on it and put the $2 million project out to bid. Marshall was able to scale back the cost by narrowing the roadway from 40 feet to 30 feet.
The project will extend Meadow Drive 3,300 feet to Erie Avenue, tying it in to a burgeoning commercial strip now anchored by Walmart.
Marshall said 80 percent of the cost of the project will be covered by federal funds, with the remaining 20 percent coming from the city, while early estimates of when construction will begin are set for the spring. And when it’s complete?
“It will lead you right to our commercial district,” Marshall said.Contact reporter Michael Regan at 693-1000, ext. 4115.