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Concordia City Commission Signs Development Agreement to Support New Parking Lot at North Central Kansas Medical Center

Additional Parking Exhibit to Add 58 More Parking Stalls to North Central Kansas Medical Center in Concordia
Additional Parking Exhibit to Add 58 More Parking Stalls to North Central Kansas Medical Center in Concordia

The Concordia City Commission authorized Mayor Chuck Lambertz to sign a development agreement with Cloud County Health Center, Inc. for development of a new parking lot to support the new North Central Kansas Medical Center during their regular meeting on Wednesday, March 15th.

Under the College Drive Park Land Pricing Policy instituted by the city in 2017, the city agreed to donate Lot 4, Block "A" of College Drive Park to the hospital for the purposes of designing, developing and constructing a new parking lot to support their new facility, which opened at 155 W. College Drive on November 16, 2022.  While the initial design for parking met code requirements based on the intended use of the facility, Hospital Administrator Dave Garnas told the commission that patient volume has increased such that additional parking is needed.

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The hospital intends to construct a new parking lot on Lot 4 this year.  The city will retain a permanent public drainage easement on this lot.

Mayor Lambertz, a member of the North Central Kansas Medical Center Board of Trustees, and Commissioner Ashley Hutchinson, Director of Governmental Relations with Salina Regional Health Center and North Central Kansas Medical Center, abstained from the vote.

The development agreement includes a reversionary clause.  If the land remains undeveloped after 18 months, the City of Concordia has a right to reacquire the property for the same price of $0.00.

In other action items, the commission approved Benesch as the city's selected floodplain consultant for the purpose of assembling data, preparing and submitting an application for a Letter of Map Revision (LOMR) to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and authorized City Manager Amy Lange to sign a contract in the amount of $35,460.

FEMA requires a licensed professional engineer to assemble the data and prepare the application for a LOMR. 

The city has done extensive work over the last decade to mitigate the potential for flooding of residents and businesses in Concordia.

A 2021 technical assistance project by the Kansas Department of Agriculture gathered current floodplain data using LiDAR, a remote sensing method, and Storm Water Management Modeling (SWMM), an open-source software application that can be used for single event or long-term simulations of water runoff quality and quantity, taking into consideration the 21st Street Dam and the city’s existing storm sewer system.  If this new information were incorporated into the Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM), the model shows approximately 200 structures could be removed from the floodplain, meaning these property owners would no longer have to pay for flood insurance if they have a mortgage on the property.

Benesch staff has a long history with taking community studies and utilizing them to update FEMA mapping.  In their proposal to the city, Benesch commits to the City of Concordia that they will work to ensure that they believe the modeling is producing accurate results regardless of specific process, to ensure the model is FEMA compliant, and then develop the supporting documentation from the model as it exists or with as minimal modification as possible to meet the requirements of the LOMR package. 

The commission also accepted the base bid from Screed Tech LLC of Fairbury, Nebraska in the amount of $1,262,797.35 for the construction of a new 80' x 80' box hangar at Blosser Municipal Airport, with electrical connections to power the building, one 70' wide aviation door with concrete approach pavement, three pedestrian doors with connecting sidewalks, and storm sewer systems as required.

This new hangar will be of sufficient size to house B-II aircraft, which are now supported by the longer, wider Runway 18/36.  Multiple sources of funding, including multi-year federal grants are being used to fund construction of the hangar.  The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) will pay 90 percent of eligible costs, with the city providing the 10 percent match.

While most of the design (geotechnical evaluations, topographic surveying, preliminary design, bidding, and partial construction administration) was paid for under a previous grant, a new FFA grant would need to cover final design costs and the remaining construction administration costs, resulting in a total project cost of $1,334,497.35, with an FAA 90 percent match of $1,201,047.00 and a 10 percent city match of $133,450.36. 

The commission also authorized City Manager Lange to sign the final design contract with Benesch in the amount of $16,700, and the construction administration contract with Benesch in the amount of $54,882, subject to partial reimbursement by the FAA, for the construction of the new box hangar.

Also during Wednesday's meeting, the commission authorized City Manager Lange to sign an asset purchase agreement with ONE Gas, Inc. for the sale of the city's three-mile natural gas pipeline serving the Concordia North Development.

Under the terms of the agreement, Kansas Gas Service, a division of ONE Gas, Inc., will assume operational oversight, control and ownership at closing.  The closing date is expected to occur within the next 30-45 days.

There are presently three customers connected to this natural gas pipeline, with more expected as development continues in this area.  The current customers are the Cloud County Law Enforcement Center, the Kansas Department of Transportation maintenance facility, and Central Plains Agronomy.

The commission voted to authorize City Manager Lange to sign a real estate purchase agreement for the property located at 830 W. 11th Street from ARR Properties, LLC, then transfer the property to the Concordia Land Bank.  

This property is located adjacent to the proposed St. Joseph Subdivision moderate income housing project in Concordia.  The primary structure is a three-story vacant residential structure and has a blighting influence on the proposed residential development.  The single-family home located behind the primary structure is not currently occupied.

City staffing recommends demolition of the three-story structure and either relocation or demolition of the single family home.

The sale price is $52,710.12.  The city will pay back taxes owed from 2021 and 2022, as well as taxes owed for the first quarter of 2023, which total $2,289.88.  The closing date is proposed as March 31, 2023.

Commissioner Ragena Belden abstained from the vote.

The commission approved the purchase of handheld and mobile radios from KaComm Inc. for $137,981.25, and two alternate bids for $1,498.00 and for $22,055.50, for a total of $161,534.75, to increase the city's emergency responder's communication ability outside the city limits.  The purchase is to be paid from a countywide Department of Justice Communication Grant.

The commission also approved utilizing the Department of Justice Communication Grant to fund a replacement of the dispatch workstation at the Concordia Police Department.  A bid from Ergo Flex Systems for furniture with an adjustable workstation, filing cabinets and lockers for the dispatchers' personal items was approved in the amount of $42,974.36.

And the commission also voted to approve the purchase of a 911 voice recorder with 16 lines from Revcord, Inc. at a total price of $8,413.00, to be paid from the Department of Justice Communication Grant.

During her Manager's Report, City Manager Lange announced they have scheduled a joint study session with USD 333 Concordia for Wednesday, April 19th to delve into a potential city-school partnership on a new gymnasium space intended to serve the needs of the school district and the community, as well as explore the possibility of attaching a corresponding citywide sales tax issue to a prospective bond issue to fund various improvements to Concordia Junior/Senior High School.

Under the discussion agenda, Tom Tuggle, Community Foundation for Cloud County Executive Director Brenda Gilliland, and Cloud County Tourism Director Susie Haver presented information on a Governors Hometown Heritage Act (GHHA) project for two signs recognizing Concordia as the hometown of Governor Frank Carlson.  The proposal is for the signs to be erected on US Highway 81 at the north and south entrances to Concordia.

Gilliland said the committee is working to raise funds for this project through grants, gifts, and donations from individuals, businesses and organizations.

Before adjourning, the commission held a 15-minute Executive Session for Attorney/Client Privilege with City Manager Lange and City Attorney Justin Ferrell.