Clearing the right of way

A Fort Dodge property with a garage that sits precariously close to construction work on Sixth Avenue Northwest will apparently be purchased by the city government.

The City Council voted Monday to buy the property at 526 Second St. N.W. from Don Woodman of Fort Dodge on the condition that the purchase price is no more than 120 percent of its appraised value.

The purchase price on an offer sheet signed by Woodman is $60,000.

A full appraisal of the property has not be conducted for the city. City Manager David Fierke said he asked an appraiser for a ”windshield appraisal” of the site. He added that it has an assessed value of $52,000.

Councilman Dave Flattery asked for the 120 percent requirement on this transaction in order to be consistent with previous property purchases the city has made.

”I support the purchase of this,” he said.

He said buying the property is a better option that paying $1,250 to shore up the garage during the reconstruction of Sixth Avenue Northwest.

Councilmen Mark Taylor and Don Wilson were absent from the otherwise unanimous vote.

Money from the city’s local option sales tax would be used to pay for the property.

Fierke had previously reported that Woodman’s garage sits 2 feet in the public right of way for Sixth Avenue Northwest.

In a report to the council, Fierke wrote that buying the property and then removing the garage and driveway would eliminate the need to build a retaining wall to protect the garage. The cost of building that wall was estimated at $45,000.

The city manager wrote that the house and property could be sold later.

Hovey Construction Inc. of Fort Dodge was hired to rebuild Sixth Avenue Northwest on a 4-2 council vote on Sept. 10, 2012. The company has a $304,158.50 contract.

The job includes a new water main, two additional fire hydrants, a new storm sewer and a new street surface. Crews were working on installing the new water main Monday afternoon.

The property at 526 Second Ave. N.W. is at the intersection of Second Street Northwest and Sixth Avenue Northwest.