Utica approves up to $85K for work in municipal complex

Move-in remains loosely targeted for late autumn

Utica’s new municipal complex (the old grade school) will get new floors and fresh paint at costs not to exceed $60,000 and $25,000, respectively.

Thursday, the Utica Village Board voted to approve contracts with Carpet Weavers and Gary Hopps Painting for the next round of work in the former Waltham South School (the Utica Grade School), which the village acquired for $135,000. The school is being re-purposed into a municipal complex with recreation center and business incubator.

“That should be about it for the school until we’re ready to go in,” said Mayor David Stewart, citing the need for a server when move-in day approaches.

“We’ve got a lot done already,” Village Clerk Laurie Gbur said approvingly. “I thought a lot gone done in a short time.”

Separately, motorists are advised to used extra caution at U.S. 6 and Route 178, where the village is completing the relocation of utilities ahead of the installation of a roundabout.

Village Engineer Kevin Heitz said the utilities relocation is “going really well” and could be completed in the next two weeks or so. However, he’s concerned with the number of motorists using hand-held phones at the wheel while workers are present. He urged motorists to put down the phones and be attentive not only during the relocation but the months-long installation of the traffic circle.

“It’s going to be a busy construction season,” he said.

Finally, the village board voted 6-0 to enter a two-year bike sharing agreement with the Canal Corridor Association, which would make rental bikes available for visitors to traverse the Illinois and Michigan Canal, which is being repaired. The village is committing up to $10,000.

Tom Collins

Tom Collins covers criminal justice in La Salle County.