Lynne Hermansen
Special to The Gardner News
Don Roberts, mayor, asked the city council at the March 24 meeting to consider applying for funds to repair the 191st and Gardner Rd. intersection.
At Edgerton’s March 25 meeting, Roberts told the council the two cities had a good meeting and great conversation. He would also like to continue the conversation.
The last few months the cities of Edgerton and Gardner have disagreed regarding 191st Street’s safety issues, traffic volume, and have discussed closing the road.
Edgerton paid for a traffic study of the Gardner Road/191st/I-35 intersection, and it was presented and reviewed by Edgerton City Council at their March 10 meeting.
The traffic study suggested closing the entrance for the Phillips 66 gas station or shutting down 191st street as the only option for Edgerton. The intersection is not within Edgerton’s boundaries.
At their September 9 meeting Edgerton discussed the option of building cul-de-sacs to help ease traffic congestion and researched if it was legal.
Gardner council have said they have concerns Edgerton is trying to keep business away from Gardner.
The study stated a considerable amount of traffic was observed using the Phillips 66 gas station to cut through to access Locust Street in Gardner. It also said the intersection of the Phillips 66 and Gardner Road driveway had a failing level of service.
Roberts said at the council meeting that Gardner had reasons for not closing the Phillips 66 because of a previous agreement with the owner.
The project is partially funded with KDOT already – who is committed to the project, he said, but will at some point close the access point.
Roberts said he thought $45 million would finish the interchange and could make the road extend to the county line.
Edgerton would be willing to partner with Gardner, he said, but he would like to see the county be the lead agent on the project.
“We could lead,” Roberts said. “But we need county support.”
He said serious improvements for the interchange would be a tremendous fix for both cities.
“I can’t imagine we wouldn’t want to move forward,” Roberts said.
Linn said she felt they would compete well for the grant and encouraged them to submit the first half now.
“We should make the best application we can,” she said.
Roberts said he had never seen anything covered 100 percent by the federal government and even though the turnaround deadline time is short with an April 14 submission deadline, they should take full advantage.
“We don’t have time to dilly dally,” he said. “This could be huge in the safety realm.”
Linn said by 2023 the federal government would probably use data from the 2020 Census, and the projects could be pushed out of rural consideration.
“This is a unique instance with all the stars aligning,” she said.
Roberts said he expected this grant to be more competitive.
“But I don’t know how not to put time into it,” he said.
Josh Lewis, council member, said it was a no-brainer – all on the positive upside.
Roberts said he didn’t want to lead the project, but would support it.

Other News:
-Ordinance No. 2104 Amending Chapter 9 Article 1 of the City Code. Edgerton Municipal Court’s start time will be one hour earlier at 2 p.m. from the original 3 p.m start time every first and third Tuesday of the month.
-Bid for the Nelson Street from East 3rd Street to West 8th Street CARS Project. The CARS program funds $79,000 of the $155,000 construction cost with a total project cost of $202,300.00. The project includes base repair, curb replacement and Ultra-thin Bonded Asphalt Surface.
Edgerton approved their consent agenda which included three items.
-The final plan for Logistics Park East of the Northeast Corner of 207th Street and Gardner Road.

Public Comments:
Bill Bushno, resident at 207th and Gardner Road, said the city had failed to complete the road as promised.
Bushno expressed frustration after two fatality accidents at his house and referred to one on January 20.
“I was kind of insulted last time at last time’s meeting,” he said.
Bushno said he considered  it negligence and gross negligence on the city’s end for safety and health hazards at Logistics Park, specifically with the Hostess Building.
“Things are progressing apparently,” he said.
Bushno said a truck driver had literally died in his front yard from a traffic accident and he was still shaken up about it.
“Two people within six months have died in front of me,” he said.