Dakota County has a $50,000 gift for Randolph Township.
County commissioners agreed last week to put $50,000 toward the reconstruction of Harry Avenue between County Road 86 and County Road 88 in Randolph Township.
The road has so many cracks and potholes that it will have to be completely rebuilt at a cost of about $654,000.
The township has received a grant worth $388,500 from the Local Road Improvement Fund, leaving a gap of $265,000 to be funded before the 2013 construction season. The county grant will reduce the gap to $215,000.
County commissioners reasoned that Harry Avenue is the primary route to Lake Byllesby Regional Park and therefore worthy of some county funding. In 2011, the park had 135,000 visitors.
Vermillion River Crossing, Farmington's first senior housing project, was dedicated Tuesday.
The $6.5 million project was built by the Dakota County Community Development Agency, which said at least 60 of the 66 units are filled. The building on Duschane Parkway, south of County Road 50, is just west of downtown.
The project offers affordable, independent housing for seniors age 55 and older. Sixty of the one- and two-bedroom apartments have fixed rental rates for lower-income residents.
City officials hope the new seniors project will help attract more businesses to the Vermillion River Crossing development, for which the city sold about $5.5 million in bonds for a bridge, roads and utilities in 2006.
Besides the senior housing project, the 60-acre development has attracted a medical clinic and a McDonald's.
The Eagan YMCA community garden produced 112 pounds of fresh vegetables for the food shelf at the Eagan Resource Center.
The tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, herbs and squash were grown from plants donated by Linder's Garden Center. Fencing was provided by Able Fence Inc. Compost came from Gopher Resource. And Y members, staff and board members all tended the garden.
"For our first year, this is an amazing harvest," said Nyam Smith, Eagan YMCA executive director. "This effort fits the Y's national initiatives relating to healthy living and social responsibility."
The garden is expected to double in size next year. Community volunteers are welcome. Contact Angie Cameron at angie.cameron@ YMCAtwincities.org or 651-683-4708.
Construction is underway for Rosemount's first permanent park-and-ride bus stop.
The 102-space lot is being built downtown across W. 45th Street from City Hall, between the railroad tracks and Burnley Avenue. Across Burnley sits a handful of apartment buildings, and the transit stop also could serve residents of a new senior housing project that may be built a few blocks away near the Steeple Center, noted Mayor Bill Droste.
Although Rosemount has been a contributing member of the Minnesota Valley Transit Authority (MVTA) for 21 years, this is the city's first transit facility, said Droste, MVTA vice chairman. "It's wonderful that we finally have this," the mayor said.
The $1.2 million facility will have a passenger shelter with restrooms and indoor and outdoor seating, lighting, landscaping and sidewalks. It is scheduled to be done by year's end, when city bus service will switch from a temporary stop at the Rosemount Community Center to the new park-and-ride, officials said.
MVTA designed the station and will provide express bus service to downtown Minneapolis. The project was paid for with county, federal and Metropolitan Council grants that are partly supported by motor vehicle taxes, said City Administrator Dwight Johnson. The 55,000-square-foot site was donated by the city.
JIM ADAMS AND LAURIE BLAKE