The vacant tract at the corner of South Agate and East Shawnee streets in Paola is being turned into a parking lot as part of the Agate Street rehabilitation project expected to begin Monday, Sept. 23. 

PAOLA — Part of South Agate Street in Paola will be closed to through traffic for the next few weeks while repair work begins on a stretch that provides access to parking behind several county facilities — including the administration building, sheriff’s office and jail.

Road and Bridge Director J.R. McMahon told county commissioners at their meeting Wednesday, Sept. 18, that Killough Construction, Inc. began work on Monday, Sept. 23. The contract provides Killough with up to 30 working days to complete the improvements.

The rehabilitation effort is expected to cover about 500 feet of South Agate Street, between Shawnee and Miami streets.

Improvements will include mill and overlay with full-depth patching, a new concrete approach to the administration parking lot, concrete curb and gutter, sidewalks east of the project, an additional parking lot and sidewalks to connect parking lots, according to a county Road and Bridge Department report.

The new parking lot will be built on a vacant tract at the corner of South Agate and East Shawnee streets, east of the current jail parking lot.

Project Manager Matt Oehlert told commissioners in late July the parking lot would add 22 parking spaces for county employees and 16 on-street parking spaces for public use.

County commissioners on July 31 awarded the Agate Street project to low bidder Killough Construction for $227,431. Commissioners also awarded a contract for construction engineering services to Baldridge Engineering, LLC for a lump sum not to exceed $8,650. Baldridge was the low bidder.

The repairs to Agate Street were made necessary by excessive wear on the street while the Miami County Detention Center was being constructed. The detention center is located at 209 S. Pearl St. next to the administration building and across the street from the courthouse.

The project is expected to wrap up about five years after county leaders officially broke ground on the new jail in December 2014. County commissioners held a dedication ceremony in November 2017 for the detention center, which began housing inmates in early 2018.

The construction project was funded by a quarter-cent sales tax approved by voters in April 2013, and the county borrowed about $18.1 million to fund the project, according to Miami County Republic archives.

“This project once completed, if I understood correctly, closes out our entire jail bonding project,” Commissioner Rob Roberts said at the July 31 meeting. “So it’s good to see this come to a conclusion.”

News Editor Doug Carder can be reached at (913) 294-2311 or doug.carder@miconews.com.

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