Chelsea DDA Continues to Talk 2019, Palmer Commons

By Seth Kinker,

The Chelsea Downtown Development Authority (DDA) continued to look ahead at the upcoming year at their first meeting of the year on Jan. 17.

First, they went over the work session from Jan. 10, citing the Federal Screw property and parking management as two main areas of focus for the DDA while also touching on operations and maintenance items that needed attention.

The Palmer Commons was also discussed as the project nears completion with City Manager John Hanifan notifying the DDA that retainage was being held with for the contractor for the project that they need to come back and address when the weather improves.

One of the biggest things is the hydroseed, which if it doesn’t grow, will need to be re- hydroseeded and there was a concern about a northwest corner and if a sidewalk would drain properly.

Hanifan noted that in Feb. the DDA can go over certain amenities that could be added to the Palmer Commons like playground equipment or benches. Trees also still need to be added, which the City will do.

There is around $100,000 remaining in the bond for the Palmer Commons project and the DDA has been discussing using most of that towards the last installment payment to free up funds that the DDA can use anywhere, not just for the Palmer Commons space.

DDA member Bill O’Reilly inquired about signage and an opening ceremony for the Palmer Commons, which Hanifan responded that there were plans to do so once signage and landscaping was taken care of with tentative plans for spring for the ceremony.

With the new year beginning, that means the fiscal year is about halfway over. The DDA also discussed the budget process with Hanifan telling the DDA that by the end of their April meeting, they should know what the budget for 2019-20 is to send to council.

The DDA can either work through their budget during regular meetings or schedule work sessions. Hanifan encouraged the DDA to think about priorities.

Seth Kinker

Reporter/Digital Media for The Sun Times News

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