Council moving forward on rail-park objectives

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The Kalispell City Council will hold a public hearing tonight on adopting the Glacier Rail Park Development Plan and establishing a Targeted Economic Development District in the rail park.

The district will act as a tax increment financing district, where increases in the tax base over the next 15 years will be used directly in financing infrastructure projects in the park that, in turn, will attract new rail-served businesses.

Following the public hearing, the council will consider establishing the district and approving a 15-page Glacier Rail Park Development Plan that outlines the project expenses, objectives and maps. The overall cost of the infrastructure needed is estimated at about $11.5 million.

In a second move to advance the Core and Rail Redevelopment Plan, the council will vote on a resolution to encourage property owners in the Core Area to petition to rezone their property to the new B-3 designation. The designation aligns with the Core Area plan of establishing new business and multifamily residential development on properties currently cut off by the rail line running through Kalispell.

Property owners will have three years to petition to rezone without having to pay the fees usually included in rezoning requests.

In other business, the council will award two bids for city water projects proposed in March.

Sandry Construction Co., Inc. had the low bid — $158,440 — for the Second Avenue East water distribution project. The Bigfork firm will replace 2-inch copper water main that serves the residences from Second to Third Avenue East, between 13th and 14th streets east with 8-inch PVC pipe.

The engineer’s estimate was $219,576. AGC Inc. was the second lowest bidder at $181,481.

Sandry Construction also will take on the sanitary sewer replacement project along the Second Avenue West North alley. The firm’s low bid was $683,138. The project seeks to boost capacity on this sewer line by replacing 8-inch pipe with 10-inch pipe in a four-block line of alleyway from Montana Street north to California Street.

LHC Inc., had the second lowest bid with $744,817.31. The engineer’s estimate was $705,076.

The council will vote to allow alcohol sales at two city events, the Kalispell Housing Tour on May 23 and the Big Shindig Block Park on June 25.

The mayor has recommended applicants to citizen advisory boards for which current board members’ terms expire on April 30. The council will make a motion to either confirm or deny each applicant.

The meeting begins at 7 p.m. at City Hall, 201 First Ave. East.

Reporter Seaborn Larson may be reached at 758-4441 or by email at

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