City assists in west-side business development
sewer line agreement to help build assisted-living facility
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[October 17, 2008]
At this week's Lincoln City
Council meeting, on Tuesday evening, members continued a discussion
that was begun a couple of months ago. The city is being asked to
take over a section of privately owned sewer line in Lincoln's
west-side business section.
St. Clara's Manor is planning to build an assisted-living
facility behind the old Wal-Mart building on Woodlawn Road. A
gravity-fed sewer line that could be used for the new development is
located under the parking lot that is owned by Lincoln Town Center,
LLC. The line, located next to and just west of Kroger, runs
northward to lift stations on the north side of Woodlawn Road.
St. Clara's administrator, Frank Shepke, was on hand to answer
questions. Shepke said that the integrity of the line has been
checked and that the size of the line would provide what is needed
by the new facility. "We've had the line pressure-tested and
televised at our expense, and both those reports were forwarded to
the city engineer and department," he said. Also, the line is not
that old, having been put in about 1992.
City attorney Bill Bates said that he has been working with the
shopping center's attorney on an agreement in which the city would
be provided an easement to service the line and then would become
responsible for the sewer line's repairs and maintenance. There were
numerous issues to resolve, and the lawyers have been tackling those
one at a time.
The city engineer, Mark Mathon, and the city sewer manager, Dave
Kitzmiller, were consulted on the plans throughout the process.
A conceptual agreement was ready for council members to weigh in
on, and the final contract could be ready for approval by Monday
evening's voting session, Bates said.
Issues that needed clarity:
- What if the line would need to be moved, such as to build
The line would need to be reinstalled as a gravity-fed line and
continue to meet city specifications. If the replacement line
was not a gravity-fed line, it would require a new lift station.
Various members of the council agreed that the city cannot be
responsible for the cost of adding a new lift station. Alderman
Buzz Busby commented that new lift stations cost about a
The current plan would not affect either of the two lift
stations, Zion or K-Mart, that currently serve the area.
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- Who would be responsible for any incidents relative to the
easement area and resulting in legal claims?
This was negotiated that the shopping center would carry
liability insurance and the city would pick up any uncovered
Details of repairs, maintenance and response time, and potential
damage responsibility were some of the other points to be worked
The city would be allowed a 15-day response time for necessary
repairs, and this would be extended if needed, if there was a
continued show of progress.
Shepke acknowledged that the lawyer for Lincoln Town Center was
dogged. And Bates conceded, "We are light-years from where we
Also considered was what the effect would be when and if the
hospital builds its facility. The line would probably be of
sufficient size that the hospital could use it as well. However, the
hospital would be responsible if an additional lift station would be
[By JAN YOUNGQUIST]
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