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Compromise found on Highway 371-Clark Lake Road median crossover closure

The Nisswa City Council believes it reached a compromise regarding the proposed closure of the median crossover at Highway 371 and Clark Lake Road.

The Minnesota Department of Transportation will close the median crossover as part of road improvements. Clark Lake Road residents and emergency response personnel voiced concerns over the proposed closure, saying it would take longer for emergency vehicles traveling south from Nisswa to reach those residences.

The council learned Wednesday, Nov. 21, that MnDOT still wants to close the crossover but is willing to leave a gravel access for emergency vehicles to use. The city would maintain the gravel access.

“I think this is a good compromise,” said council member Lenny Hodgson.

Mayor Brian Lehman agreed, saying that would take care of the public safety concern.

The city planned to contact concerned residents about the compromise.

Nisswa Lake Park

The council on Wednesday, Nov. 21, approved a Nisswa Lake Park schematic design to show to the DNR.

The first phase of the park project included a broad, general schematic design done by Short Elliot Hendrickson (SEH) engineering firm in Brainerd.

Matt Reid of SEH said the concept plan includes a broad, bird’s-eye view look at topography, trees and the lake bottom. The plan identifies challenges and opportunities at the park site on Hazelwood Drive on Nisswa Lake.

The design includes possible placement of trails, restroom facility, picnic areas, beach, pier, gazebos, trails and connections to downtown, Hazelwood Drive and a regional bike trail.

The Friends of Nisswa Lake Park continues to raise funds to build the park. A completed park isn’t expected for a couple more years.

Public safety

Police officer Luke Hamilton received a lifesaving award from North Memorial Ambulance Service for an incident that occurred June 10. Hamilton’s actions helped save a patient who was in cardiac arrest.

Police had 164 calls for service in October. Calls included 50 traffic warnings, 19 traffic citations, 23 agency assists, 12 alarms, five arrests and two criminal citations.

In other business Nov. 21, the council:

• Held a public hearing and then agreed to issue general obligation bonds and adopt a capital improvement plan to restructure the bond to finance city hall at a better interest rate. The restructuring of the 2004 bonds will save the city more than $200,000. No one spoke at the public hearing.

• Approved a request for the Run Around Round by Camp Lincoln and Camp Lake Hubert on Aug. 24.

• Learned Nisswa Park and Recreation received $1,500 from the Nisswa Women of Today fashion show proceeds.

• Learned Shawn Hansen was hired as the chamber’s executive director after being interim director. Hansen told the council about two events that will be added in 2013 in Nisswa: Majestic Pines Arts Fair in June and a yearlong geocaching tour along the Paul Bunyan Trail with Nisswa and Bemidji as the anchor cities.

• Certified delinquent sewer accounts to the county to add the payments to property tax statements.

• Approved a Brainerd Jaycees raffle request at Grand View Lodge for Jan. 18.

• Agreed to close city hall on Monday, Dec. 24, Christmas Eve Day.

Council member Jan Pierce was absent.

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
I've worked at the Brainerd Dispatch with various duties since Dec. 7, 1983. Starting off as an Ad Designer and currently Director of Audience Development. The Dispatch has been an interesting and challenging place to work. I'm fortunate to have made many friends, both co-workers and customers.
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