Dakota County news briefs: West St. Paul sports dome exceeds budgeted revenues

  • Updated: May 18, 2013 - 12:25 PM

The West St. Paul sports dome has been open for six months, and the city reports that “revenues have exceeded projections and expenses are under budget.’’

Field rentals came to $504,812 compared to expected revenues of $495,600. Advertising brought in $10,750, and vending machines brought in $1,215.

However, there are other problems, according to a council member.

Former City Council Member Jim Englin, who retired from the City Council at the end of last year, has resigned from his volunteer duties as city overseer of the operation of the new sports dome next to City Hall, City Council Member Ed Iago told council members at a meeting last week.

Englin had wanted to assist the city in overseeing activities at the dome, but the time involved turned out to be more than he anticipated, Iago said.

“He was less than satisfied with the maintenance of the dome,” Iago said. Without Englin, “We have lost the person who was going to go down and watch this first year out.’’

Debris has not been picked up and restrooms have run out of toilet paper. The company managing the dome is under contract until October, and the city can make a change in management at that time if it wants to.

“My expectation is that if you are going to pay a management company to manage, they are going to manage it,’’ said City Council Member Dave Wright. It may be that the contract needs to be written to make duties more clear, he said.

Mayor John Zanmiller said some of the issues with the management group have already been addressed.

West St. Paul

Robert St. residents want no noise walls

Residents who live along Robert Street in West St. Paul did not elect to have noise walls built when the city’s main street is rebuilt beginning next year.

Residents and business owners were invited to vote this spring on the walls, and just one person wanted them, West St. Paul City Engineer Matt Saam said last week in a review of the project for the Dakota County board. The project will cost $22.2 million, including construction and right of way and engineering costs. It is the biggest project in the city’s history, Saam said. The city is still trying to address a funding shortfall of $2.5 million.

The new road will have a center median between two lanes on each side. The street stretches 2.5 miles in West St. Paul between the border of St. Paul on the north and the border of Inver Grove Heights on the south. Big monument signs are planned at either end of the new street to announce the entrance to the city.

It’s been 25 years since Robert Street’s pavement was last upgraded. “We think this project can revitalize our town and the corridor,’’ Saam said.

There are 144 driveways along Robert, which contribute to high crash numbers. Some will be closed as part of the road reconstruction, and the city will need easements for right of way purchases from up to 140 properties along the street, Saam said.


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