Q. I'm wondering what is going on out here just north of Ridgeview right off of Interstate 80 just east of the 130 interchange. They have been putting in round rings and pouring concrete into the rings. It's kind of along the fence line that borders Interstate 80 just north of Ridgeview? — Joy, Davenport
A. We contacted the Iowa Department of Transportation for more information. Clyde Tobey responded: "New power lines for Kraft's (Oscar Mayer) new plant."
We also contacted the city of Davenport. Tom Leabhart, public works department, also responded: "This sounds like the transmission line MidAmerican Energy Company is constructing for Kraft. They have both city and (Iowa) DOT permits as needed."
We also contacted Kraft Heinz. Michael Mullen, senior vice president of corporate and government affairs, responded, "Thank you for reaching out and for the opportunity to respond to your reader’s inquiry. We can confirm that the construction in question involves one of two transmission lines powering our new, state-of-the-art Kraft Heinz manufacturing plant in Davenport. The new facility will be completed in 2017 and represents an investment of more than $200 million in modern, high-tech and energy-efficient production capabilities. As confirmed by the public works department, we have received all necessary easements and permits required to complete construction."
Q. During the recent storm, we noticed a car had badly damaged the guard rail on Interstate 74. Who pays to repair that rail? I know that the state does the repair but wondered if the vehicle's insurance pays toward fixing it? — Eldridge resident
A. We contacted the Iowa Department of Transportation to find out. Catherine Cutler, transportation planner, District 6, of the Iowa Department of Transportation, responded: "Yes, if we learn of the person responsible, we work with their insurance company to recoup costs."
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Q. On 9th and Gaines streets in Davenport, workers have dug a huge hole in this large plot of land. Could you please explain why? It's on the right side of the road heading up Gaines. You can't miss it if you drive by. — Zelda
A. We contacted the city of Davenport regarding your question. Nicole Gleason, public works director/assistant city administrator, responded, "Thanks for the question! The hole being referred to is the line of the sanitary and storm sewers, which could not receive as much fill as the surrounding area in order to maintain pipe integrity. The pipes/manholes are only designed to support the 12-feet of cover that is currently there.
"The city is investigating options for this area with Parks, Forestry and Natural Resources, but nothing has been finalized in the Capital Improvement Program budget as of yet. Some work, such as native and tree planting, will be planned in this year using operating funds."