River Falls City Council met last night, voting to support a proposal for the University of Wisconsin-River Falls for a Science and Technology Innovation Center, sharing the successes of the Grow To Share nonprofit, and more.
Grow to Share Update
Representative Tovah Flygare from Grow to Share, the volunteer-based collaborative garden in Hoffman Park, provided the council and community with an update on the organizations initiatives. Even with the restrictions of COVID-19, the nonprofit was able to produce and distribute 1,200 pounds, $5,000 worth, of produce in conjunction with community partners, none of which would be possible without the nearly 600 hours of volunteer work from community members. Grow to Share provides fresh produce to the community food pantry, River Falls Housing Authority and Turningpoint for Victims of Domestic and Sexual Violence. Grow to Share is also growing its educational programs and has recently received a grant for a canopy shade to provide an outdoor event space.
The council approved four resolutions at the meeting.
They also approved the purchase of a John Deer Loader, used for multiple purposes throughout the year, including assisting with snow removal. The loader currently owned by the city requires costly repairs that would have had to be conducted off site over three to four weeks, and include the rental of a temporary replacement.
The resolution supporting the UW-River Falls proposed Science and Technology Innovation Center was approved. “This proposed new facility is critical to addressing outdated science facilities and ensuring UW-River Falls is able to effectively educate students by providing an affordable and high-quality education, by increasing undergraduate research opportunities, and by meeting industry demand in Wisconsin’s high growth industries,” states the UW-River Falls website.
Lastly, the council approved a bid awarding the South Main lift pump removal, sanitary improvements and casing installation project. This resolution awarded the base bid and alternate one to Total Excavating, LLC of just over $150,000.
The City Administrator, Scot Simpson, reminded the council and community that the season of road projects is upon us. The State of Wisconsin highway 29 project, which in River Falls is Cemetery Road and part of South Main Street, will begin next week with a tentative end date of October 1.
The City has also begun preparations for the pool and splash pad opening. Simpson said the splash pad should open May 22. They will also be conducting some trail repairs in Hoffman Park, concluding around May 24.
“I also do want to take the opportunity to thank the City Council and the Mayor again, and the community for their investments in the city facilities,” said Simpson. “I had the opportunity in the office to be looking out my window and seeing all the flowering trees at City Hall. And things are looking pretty good and I appreciate the community's investment in our work environment here at the City.”