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Palm Springs council paves way for improvements at PSP

More improvements are coming to the Palm Springs International Airport.



a airplane that is driving down the road: An American Airlines flight takes off Palm Springs International Airport, November 19, 2019.


© Jay Calderon/The Desert Sun
An American Airlines flight takes off Palm Springs International Airport, November 19, 2019.

The Palm Springs City Council on Thursday unanimously approved an amendment to the airport concession lease agreement and concept designs related to a demonstration garden and future turf conversion projects.

An extension of the concessions agreement with Paradies Shops, which has operated at the airport since 1999, will be in effect through April 2023, according to the city.

It will include a $512,000 investment from Paradies to improve food and bar spaces with proposed concepts such as Santa Rosa Kitchen and Spirits, PSP Coffee House and The Wine Bar at PSP in lieu of the 12th Fairway, Starbucks and California Vintage. 

Approving the amendment will allow Paradies to begin working on design plans, acquiring equipment and hiring staff in hopes of opening some locations by mid-November, according to a staff report. 

The deal with Paradies comes as more airlines announce flights to and from Palm Springs. On Thursday, Southwest Airlines announced it will begin flying out of Palm Springs on Nov. 15 to Phoenix, Oakland and Denver.

“I think it’s important that when people come into our airport, they have a good experience so they’ll want to return,” Councilman Dennis Woods said. “Part of that experience is having vendors available for food and drink as they pass through, especially if they’ve been on a long flight.”

The agreement also comes several months after HMS Host, which used to manage food and beverage sales at the airport, terminated its operations there effective July 31. 

“HMS’s termination of operations eliminated food service, bar service, and the two licensed Starbucks operations at PSP,” a staff report stated. 

In addition to concessions, the council unanimously approved

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Mesquite City Council approves expanded road improvements in two neighborhoods

Those living in the Quail Hollow and Town East Estates neighborhoods are the next Mesquite residents to have their streets designated for road repairs.

The Mesquite City Council approved two separate contracts at a Monday night meeting, clearing the way for localized concrete repair on streets, sidewalks, gutters and curbs. The work will begin as soon as next month.

Commissioner John Wiley Price, seen at a meeting March 19, 2020 in Dallas, is seeking re-election to a post he has held since 1985.

The council approved a $1.4 million contract with KIK Underground, LLC for the Quail Hollow project, which is expected to take six months. It also approved a $4.15 million contract with HQS Construction, LLC for the larger Town East Estates project, which is expected to take around a year.

“Quality streets in our neighborhoods is vital to maintaining community pride and curbside appeal of our housing stock,” Mesquite Mayor Bruce Archer said in a statement. “The City Council is committed to repairing as many residential streets as possible, as quickly as we can. Improving streets also improves neighborhood vitality.”

He said the council is aware that there are still several neighborhoods that need repairs and the city is working as fast as it can to get to them.

Road work is already in progress on six miles of road in the area south of South Parkway and east of Peachtree Road. Those projects, and the pair that was recently approved, are part of the city’s ongoing Real Texas Roads bond program, approved by voters in November 2015. That program has resulted in improvements on 33 miles of two-lane residential roads, according to the City of Mesquite.

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Sioux City Council to vote on contract for Riverside Pool House renovation project | Government and Politics



Riverside Pool (copy) (copy)

People swim at Riverside Pool in Sioux City in this 2017 file photo. The Sioux City Council will be asked Monday to award a $214,000 contract to W.A. Klinger for a pool house renovation project.




SIOUX CITY — The Sioux City Council will be asked Monday to award a $214,000 contract to a Sioux City contractor for the Riverside Family Aquatics Center Pool House renovation project.

The project includes the renovation of the 2,180-square-foot existing pool house facility and the construction of a 300-square-foot storage building and staff break area.

The renovation of the pool house will create two accessible shower spaces, changing areas and bathroom stalls, according to city documents.

W.A. Klinger, LLC submitted a base bid of $198,000 and a bid of $16,000 for alternate 1, an electrical upgrade, which is 6 percent above the architect’s estimate of $211,000.



Sioux City Council could consider more automated traffic cameras

W.A. Klinger’s bid was one of five bids received by the city. L&L Builders submitted a base bid that was $600 less than W.A. Klinger’s, but W.A. Klinger’s bid for the electrical upgrade was $2,200 less. 

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“We have the budget to approve both the base bid and the alternate,” Sioux City Parks and Recreation Director Matt Salvatore said.

The project, which has a completion date of April 30, will make Riverside Family Aquatics Center more accessible to the public and more functional for aquatics staff.


City could commit $1 million to Benson Building redevelopment project


New wayfinding system being implemented in downtown Sioux City


Sioux City public swimming pool attendance dropped 65 percent this summer

Photos: Sioux City swimming pools through the years

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Allentown City Council votes down Atiyeh rezoning for 200 homes on former industrial site

For now, a 21-acre former industrial site in Allentown’s Union Terrace neighborhood will remain undeveloped.



diagram, map: A map of the Union Terrace tracts Abe Atiyeh and Stephen Rohrbach are requesting Allentown rezone for medium-density residential development.


© Courtesy of Urban Research & Development Corp./The Morning Call/TNS
A map of the Union Terrace tracts Abe Atiyeh and Stephen Rohrbach are requesting Allentown rezone for medium-density residential development.

City Council on Wednesday night voted down a rezoning request for the two parcels that comprise the site where Abe Atiyeh and Stephen Rohrbach had planned to build up to 200 homes. The developers argued that rezoning the land for medium-density residential development would be more productive than the current parkland zoning.

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The site includes a former quarry that has since been filled in, and contamination precludes the city from developing the land into a park. Allentown planning staff had said housing would be a more viable use.

But City Council rejected the zoning change in a vote of 5-2, citing concerns that it would allow too many homes, resulting in too much traffic and issues for the already overcrowded Union Terrace Elementary School.

Several council members considered postponing the vote until completion of the city’s Vision 2030 plan, which calls for updating the city’s zoning. But since that could take more than a year, they proceeded with the vote.

Council President Daryl Hendricks voted “no” along with Candida Affa, Ce-Ce Gerlach, Joshua Siegel and Ed Zucal. Julio Guridy and Cynthia Mota were in favor of the project.

“It’s a hard decision,” said Affa, who was initially in favor of a project that would create affordable housing and generate taxes. But she switched after hearing others’ concerns.

“I don’t see too much of a downside. The houses look lovely. It’s affordable, and the fact that if they do start building shortly they can get these low-interest mortgages,” she said.

Zucal said if the

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Small homes made of Maine materials could boost economy, aid climate, council says

The Maine Climate Council has suggested a strategy that draws on the potential for constructing fuel efficient, modestly priced homes with locally sourced wood to help address the state’s affordable housing shortage while boosting the economy.



a truck is parked on the side of a building


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Sustainably harvested wood – particularly when transport is minimal – is more sensible when compared with steel and concrete, which have a denser carbon footprint, Stephen Shaler, associate director of the Advanced Structures and Composites Center at the University of Maine, told the Maine Monitor.

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Using locally sourced wood to build homes could expand job opportunities in construction, design and forest products, revitalize former mill towns, help trade school programs and strengthen university research and development, the climate council reported.

While Maine is known for producing traditional hardwood from spruce and pine, engineered wood like laminated strand lumber is a newer industry. Wood fiber insulation manufacturing is on track to begin by 2022. A nanocellulose alternative to sheetrock also is in the early stages of development.

In collaboration with Downeast Maine Community Partners, students recently constructed a “tiny” 560-square-foot house for a Millbridge resident. The project helped explore the feasibility of producing similar structures on a broader scale, the Maine Monitor reported.

Plans are now underway to build affordable zero-energy modular (ZEM) homes, made from local wood products, at the former Great Northern mill site in Millinocket – now the One Katahdin multiuse industrial park.

Consultants with the L3C firm Material Research have signed a memorandum of understanding with Our Katahdin – a nonprofit economic development group – for a ZEM home factory that annually could build up to 500 homes that range from 600 to 1,000 square feet.

Caroline Pryor, co-founder of Material Research, told the Maine Monitor the typical price point for

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