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The original item was published from 7/17/2013 9:35:06 AM to 7/30/2013 12:10:00 AM.

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Posted on: July 17, 2013

[ARCHIVED] Dakins Lake Expansion Project Encounters Small Delay

After reviewing bids for the Dakins Lake Expansion Project at its July 15 meeting, the Story County Conservation Board recommended that the Story County Board of Supervisors not approve a bid for the project. The supervisors agreed with this recommendation and did not award a contract at their meeting on July 16.

Bids for the project were solicited in June, and four bids were opened by the Board of Supervisors on July 9. According to Special Projects Ranger Carol Williams, the bids were significantly higher than engineer’s estimates and exceeded available funds. Engineers from Shive-Hattery (the firm hired to design the expansion project), said bids for the subcontracted items were hard to obtain and very high due to a busy building environment.

“We are very committed to this project,” SCCB Chair Jim Pease said. “But right now, to be responsible users of public funds, we cannot go over budget and will need to re-bid the project in a different way.”

Although no contract was awarded, both the Story County Conservation Board and the Story County Board of Supervisors remain positive that the Dakins Lake Expansion project will be completed.

“The Dakins Lake Expansion is very valuable to the county,” Story County Supervisor Rick Sanders said. “Funding for the project is available, and we will complete it with the best interest of the citizens of the county in mind.”

In an effort to move the project forward, the conservation board directed staff and Shive-Hattery to work on a bid package for construction of the lake, including shoreline revetment, spawning beds, and jetties. It will also include construction of wetlands and rough grading of the entire project site. The conservation board hopes a contractor will begin lake construction in early fall.

SCC Director Michael Cox said that bids for other items in the project, including campground, boat ramp, and picnic shelter will be let at a later date. The conservation board will work with Shive-Hattery engineers to obtain the most competitive bids possible.

“We are committed to creating a park that Story County citizens can be proud of and that will serve many future generations,” Cox said.

Dakins Lake, located on the northeast edge of Zearing (12635 710th Ave.), is currently a 41-acre park but will be expanded to a little over 100 acres. As part of that expansion, Story County Conservation plans to increase the amount of open water available for public use with the addition of a 15-acre lake and provide new amenities, including a 30-site campground, shower house, boat ramp, and picnic shelter. The majority of the expansion project will be funded by tax-increment financing (TIF) on the windmills in the northeast corner of Story County.

More information about the project can be found on the Conservation website at Interested individuals may also contact Special Projects Ranger Carol Williams at 515-232-2516 (8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday), or email

Story County Conservation manages more than 3,500 acres of parks and natural areas, including lakes, campgrounds, and trails. Story County Conservation's volunteer program provides volunteer opportunities to individuals and groups interested in making a difference in local natural resources. No individual will be excluded from events conducted by Story County Conservation because of a disability or impairment. To request accommodations to participate, contact Story County Conservation.

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Carol Williams
Story County Conservation
Phone 515-232-2516
FAX 515-232-6989

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