Lynne Hermansen
Special to The Gardner News
The Gardner council accepted a Kansas Department of Transportation award contract for the I-35 and Gardner Road construction project at their Oct. 5 council meeting.
The $4.5 million contract begins in October, and construction will begin early next year.
The project is for the following improvements:
-Relocation of 191st Street west of Gardner Road to 188th and Locust Street from 188th to 191st to be completed by July 2021.
-A traffic signal Gardner Road and 188th Street.
-Locust Street between 188th and 191st Street.
-Temporary traffic signal at Gardner Road and Both North and Southbound I-35 Ramps.
-A left turn lane for Southbound Gardner Road at the Northbound I-35 on ramp.
Pyramid Contractors and Pyramid Properties from Olathe will oversee the construction project.
Matt Kramer, public works director, said the project will be a big safety improvement.
“This will pave the way for more economic development,” he said.

In other business:
The council passed an Amended and Restated Development Project with Price Chopper and Cosentino’s.
Tyler Ellsworth, the city’s bond counsel, gave an overview of the project details over Zoom.
He said a traffic signal project had been considered and studied at the Walgreen’s street entrance, but KDOT determined it wasn’t warranted at the time.
Ellsworth said the amendment would increase TIF property tax collections an extra year for a total of 11 years from the original 10 year agreement.
-The city adopted a resolution to the City’s Personnel Policies Section 5-106.4 removing language for employee lateral position moves.
Alan Abramovitz, human resources manager, said they will now determine if there is a change in an employee’s salary for consistency and fairness.
“It doesn’t mean someone is always getting a raise,” he said.
Steve Shute, mayor, read four proclamations at the beginning of the meeting.
Shute proclaimed October is Fire Prevention Month, Community Planning Month and Breast Cancer Awareness Month. He proclaimed October 4-10 as Public Power Week.
Shute presented Community Planning Month to the new City Community and Planning Director Dave Knopick. He presented the Power Planning Week to Utilities Director Gonz Garcia. Johnson County Fire District 1 was not in attendance to receive the Fire Prevention month proclamation.
Shute’s Breast Cancer Proclamation emphasized their support for council member Tory Roberts.
She thanked the community for their outreach and said she had undergone two surgeries after being diagnosed this year.
“I appreciate the proclamation to make people aware and get their mammograms early,” she said.