Aledo looking into reopening the town
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Aledo looking into reopening the town

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ALEDO — Aldermen discussed COVID-19 public health concerns and reopening city hall at the Monday, May 18, Aledo City Council meeting, held via video conference.

Aledo City Administrator and Chief of Police Chris Sullivan said logistics would play a part in reopening city hall to the public since there’s only one door for entry.

“We’re going back and forth on what would work and what we’ll accept," Mayor Chris Hagloch said. "I would sure like to have it open next week.”

Officials are restarting the city's E-Cycle service June 4 at the City Garage, 309-311 E. Main Street. It's held from 9 a.m. to noon and 12:30 to 3 p.m. on the first and third Thursdays of each month. Alderman Jim Holmes will be on site to collect residents' electronics and paint waste. A list of acceptable items can be found under 'Community' and 'E-Cycle' on the city's website, www.aledoil.org. Social Distancing will be required. The service was suspended in mid-March because of COVID-19.

The city’s economic development company, 353 Court, will begin scheduling appointments in the coming weeks to talk with struggling downtown business owners. Hagloch said they could offer assistance, and “hopefully guide them, try to see what they’re doing right or wrong, make some adjustments to help them out the next couple months.”

Sullivan said: “We’re hoping to get more and more things open more quickly. We’re in a zone that doesn’t have a record like Chicago. ... In our county we’ve been multiple days — the 14th case (the most recent confirmed by the Mercer County Department of Health) was already six weeks or older when we got it.” He said no one in the county had needed a ventilator.

The old Mercer Carnegie Library is getting an update following approval of a redevelopment TIF agreement with owner WJ Albertson and Perryton LLC. The terms mean the owner will be reimbursed up to half the cost of work done, not to exceed $50,000 per the Downtown Revitalization Program Loan Agreement. 353 Court reviewed and recommended the action.

The building has been vacant since the library moved to its new location in April of 2019.

Work on the building at 200 College Ave. will include replacement of the HVAC system, windows and roofing. Plans are to restore and revitalize the building while maintaining the historic look and structure.

It’s uncertain what the building will house.

"I’m not privy to every bit of it. I know that his plans are to do something on the tech side,” Hagloch said. He said the building was a part of the downtown historic district and would remain so.

Aldermen approved engineering services for alley reconstruction and utility relocation with IMEG in the 100 block of East Main Street for $7,950.00, funded through TIF.

According to the proposal, city staff were contacted by a local developer in December 2019 in regards to utility information on the alley. The developer was in the initial stages of coordinating new electrical services for the building located at 110 East Main Street. To start planning of the service upgrade, all utilities needed to be located. At that point It was discovered that the utility conflicts within the alley were significant and violated code compliance in a majority of buildings.

Public Works Director Justin Blaser said they planned to apply for construction grants to do the work,

“There are currently three different grant opportunities available, two of which could be eligible for the construction of this project. In order to apply, a design would need to be completed before the project would be considered.” Grants are available through the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity Office.

Aldermen also:

  • Heard that eighth-graders would be honored during the Corona Cruise. The Cruise is put on between 5 and 7 p.m. each Wednesday. Residents drive around, honk, wave, smile and patronize curbside service at downtown restaurants.
  • Formally approved reopening parks within Aledo city limits.
  • Heard a resolution for improvements as part of the northwest- and southwest-quadrant street resurfacing project under Illinois Highway Code.
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