After a series of public meetings to get input from the citizens, the city of Lookout Mountain, Ga., is close to issuing a Request for Proposal (RFP) for the new Town Center. “This is the biggest project to take place in the community in years,” said Mayor David Bennett at the March 24 council meeting.
The RFP will be published by the city next week. Interested bidders have until June 30, approximately 90 days, to submit bids. Information regarding the city’s requirements will be available at the city hall. There will also be a pre-bid conference scheduled for April 28, during which town officials will talk to prospective bidders about proposals and requirements.
The RFP mentions the fact that the design guidelines have been developed by the town and they will be available to the prospective bidders. Proposals will have to include the design agreement to comply.
A letter of interest from prospective developers must be submitted 30 days before the bid opening on June 30 or at the time a bid is made. This document will provide information about the company and proof of financial ability.
Sewer Board Representative Jimmy Campbell and Town Attorney Bill Pickering met with the developer of Brow Wood, Duane Horton, and have reached an agreement that the contract regarding the sewer system will combine Covenant College, Brow Wood and Thrive and will have a five-year renewal. The town will buy the sewer lines for these facilities for $350,000. Covenant, Brow Wood and Thrive will pay Lookout Mountain, Ga., a $31,000 yearly user fee. Some of this money will go into a maintenance account for those lines.
Statistics from the fire and police departments from February were compiled by Chief Todd Gann. The police patrolled 2,916 miles, made 11 traffic stops, issued two citations, gave 13 warnings and handled two auto accidents. Four city ordinance warnings were also given during the month. Investigations were made of four suspicious vehicles and two suspicious persons. During the month, there were two medical calls, two assist-motorist calls and four assist-citizen calls. There were no thefts or burglaries and no fire calls.
Councilmember Taylor Watson announced that because of some residents’ lack of attention to their property the town is starting to enforce its nuisance ordinances. This includes houses with garbage and junk in yards, uncut grass and overgrowth of invasive plants. She said that the city is aware of just four or five properties with these conditions.
There is a push to rid the mountain of invasive plants, and all of the mountain’s garden clubs, the Lookout Mountain Conservancy, Lula Lake Land Trust, the National Park Service and Tennessee River Gorge Trust are working together to remove them. She said that landowners are responsible for removing kudzu from their property and will face penalties if it is not removed. If the property owners opt not to remove their kudzu, the town will remove it and charge for the chemicals and labor.
Councilmember Caroline Williams provided an update from Fairyland Elementary School. The fifth grade field trip will be the first week in May when the students will go to a 4-H facility in North Georgia and camp out. Graduation is May 20 and school is back in session again on August 3. She said that the next step concerning the aquaponics project is to structure a campaign to raise money.
The city has submitted an annual stormwater report and is in good shape in that department, said City Manager Brad Haven. Next month’s council meeting will include a presentation about stream buffers by a biologist who is developing a map to tell the buffer sizes along every stream. This will help when making infrastructure improvements to pipes and ditches that handle stormwater.
Mayor Bennett said that asbestos found in a house that the town purchased at the entrance of the commercial district has now been removed; the next step will be to tear the house down.
The speed limit on Lula Lake Road has officially been reduced to 25 miles per hour along the entire length. The road also needs to be repaved, said the mayor. The cost estimate for resurfacing it is $230,000 to $250,000. Road striping will begin when the weather warms up.
Rick Collett, a resident of Lookout Mountain, Ga., asked the council for permission to claim his house address as a home office. This would enable him to get certification from the state of Georgia for his home healthcare business that is based on Shallowford Road in Tennessee. Attorney Pickering recommended approving Mr. Collett for the license.
The next council meeting is April 21 at 5:30 p.m. at City Hall.