Right-of-Way Infrastructure Projects
The Infrastructure & Mobility—Engineering branch of the Public Works & Mobility Department works with other City department to identify areas in the city that lack right-of-way infrastructure, usually sidewalks. City engineers and planners look at factors including access to to schools, neighborhood parks, public transportation, and other facilities that citizens would like to reach using pedestrian facilities, if they were available. They look at where sidewalks should be installed to complete this system of pedestrian facilities. They then make recommendations to City Council, which decides if a project should move forward by ordering the work to be completed or not.
When an area is chosen for sidewalk work, the City has a process for notifying affected residents of the work details and of their financial responsibility. To notify them, the City uses an extensive notification process that may vary slightly from project to project. (See the specific project for details below on how project information will be provided to affected residents.) To assist property owners with costs assessed to them, the City created a Sidewalk Assessment Funding Assistance Program (Resolution 8416), which is further detailed in Public Works & Mobility Administrative Rule 418, Funding Assistance for City Council Ordered Right-of-Way Special Improvement Assessment Program.
Eaton Street Project - Phase 1
Right-of-Way and Sidewalk Improvements
Location: The limits of the Eaton St. Phase I project include both sides of Eaton St. from S. 7th St. W. to S. 13th St. W. and the south side of S. 10th St. W. from Eaton St. to Schilling St. See project location map link below.
Current Condition: Eaton St. emerged as a high priority for sidewalk completion for several reasons:
- It is classified as a collector street as well as a designated transit route with several bus stop locations along the corridor.
- It is a main north/south route in the Franklin to the Fort Neighborhood, which historically has been underserved with infrastructure improvements.
- Recently, it has seen increased traffic volumes and a crash history that includes some serious injuries.
Description: This project involves the construction of curb and sidewalk where none exists, curb bulb-outs at certain intersections, a sidewalk bridge, and culvert extensions at irrigation ditch sidewalk crossings. Boulevard trees are shown on the design plans, and they will be planted the year after construction of curb, sidewalk, and associated right-of-way improvements.
Benefits: This project provides safe, convenient, and accessible pedestrian facilities along local, collector, and transit routes. It will connect the west side of the Franklin to the Fort Neighborhood to Franklin Park, Franklin School, and transit services.
Project Dates: This project is currently in the design phase. The City expects construction to begin in Spring/Summer of 2022, but this start date is dependent upon how project bids come in compared to the project budget.
A postcard was mailed out the 2nd week of November to owners of properties adjacent to the proposed project.
January 4, 2022—City mails Letter #1 (see column on right) to affected property owners.
January 25, 2022—City Council approves project.
Next Steps: City staff is preparing Letter #2, which will be mailed to affected property owners about a week following City Council approval of the project.
Project Location Map (pdf)
Project Conceptual Plans (pdf)
Project Contact: Mark Todorovich, Construction Projects Coordinator, email: email@example.com, call: (406) 552-6098
Turner and Worden Streets
Mobility Improvements Project
Location: Both sides of Turner St. from Scott St. to Worden Ave., both sides of Worden Ave. from Turner St. to N. 5th St. West, and the east side of Holmes St. adjacent to the Community Gardens.
Description: This project will:
- construct curb and sidewalk where none exists,
- install curb bulb-outs at certain intersections,
- create new bus stops,
- stripe new bike lanes on both sides of Turner St. from Scott St. to Worden Ave. and both sides of Worden Ave. from Turner St. to N. 5th St., including the atypical intersection at Stoddard St., and
- plant boulevard trees (likely the year after the surface construction is completed).
Benefits: This project will provide safe, convenient, and accessible facilities for people of all ages and abilities to walk, bike, and take the bus across the Northside neighborhood between Scott St. and Orange St.
Project Dates: The project is currently in the design phase. The City expects construction to begin in Summer 2022, depending on budget and current bidding environment. Work on N. 5th St. will likely be pushed out until 2023 to coincide with a water main replacement project.
Public Meetings: Dec. 9, 2021, at 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. If you weren't able to attend either of these public meetings, recordings of the meetings are available below:
Next Steps: Please watch the meeting videos and then email or call Ben or Monte if you have any questions.
Public Process: Below is a a link to information on the process the City will follow to notify property owners whose property is adjacent to this proposed project and who may have an assessment for a portion of the sidewalk improvements.
Project Conceptual Plans (pdf)
Project Contacts: Monte Sipe, Construction Projects Manager, email: firstname.lastname@example.org, call: (406) 552-6092 or
Ben Weiss, Senior Transportation Planner, email: email@example.com, call: (406) 552-6352
Sidewalk Assessment Notification Process
A right-of-way improvement project is initiated and discussed by Surface Transportation Engineering staff, Transportation Planning staff, and/or neighborhood property owners. For projects that include sidewalk construction that may include a sidewalk assessment for properties adjacent to the proposed sidewalk, the following process has been established according to Public Works & Mobility Administrative Rule 410, Right-of-Way Special Improvement Assessment Program Procedures:
1. Informational Letter, Postcard, or Other Mailing—City Staff will mail an informational letter, postcard, or other mailing to the affected property owners, the appropriate Neighborhood Council, and City Council Ward Representatives. The letter will outline the proposed project in general terms so that they are aware of the upcoming project.
2. Possible Neighborhood Meeting—A neighborhood meeting may be scheduled to discuss the proposed improvement project and its scope of work. The Transportation Planning Manager and the Surface Transportation Engineering Construction Project Manager will determine if one or more neighborhood meetings is necessary. These meetings may coincide with Neighborhood Council meetings.
3. Letter #1 (Notification)—This letter advises property owners of the proposed project, provides estimated work quantities and costs, and invites them to participate in meetings with Surface Transportation Engineering Staff and at City Council and Public Works Committee meetings on specific scheduled dates. This letter will be sent approximately 12 days before the scheduled Public Works Committee meeting date. The letter may include drawings or photographs to help explain the proposed improvements.
4. Letter #2 (Order)—This letter will be sent by Certified Mail and serves as the official notification to property owners that the City Council has ordered the project work to go forward. It will be sent approximately one week after the City Council’s decision to order the project. An “Owner Reply Form” will be included with the letter to allow property owners to:
- hire their own contractor instead of using the one the City will hire during a competitive bidding process,
- elect a payment method (full payment or assessment (for 8, 12, or 20 years).
Information on requesting Deferred Loans (low income) or High Assessment Deferments (over $6,000) is provided.
5. Letter #3 (Bid Award Consideration)—This letter informs property owners of the unit prices submitted by the lowest responsive and responsible bidder for the project and provides a revised cost estimate for the work. It also invites property owners to participate in meetings with Surface Transportation Engineering staff and at City Council and Public Works Committee meetings where Council members will consider awarding the public infrastructure improvements to a contractor. City staff will send this letter within 5 days of the bid opening and will allow 10 days advance notice of the Public Works Committee meeting date.
6. Letter #4 (Revised Order Letter)—This letter will be sent by Certified Mail and provides property owners with results of the contract award, identifies the award contractor, and provides the estimated start and completion dates. It also provides property owners with a revised cost estimate and advises them of the procedures to follow if they would like to voluntarily add additional work to their portion of the project. City staff will send this letter within one week of the City Council meeting at which the Council members make their contract award decision.
7. Letter #5 (Construction Completed)—This letter advises property owners of final amount of actual construction cost and reminds owners of the payment method they have on file with the City. A method to estimate semi-annual assessment payments is provided for terms of 8, 12, or 20 years. A “Final Owner Reply” form will be included that allows owners to change their payment method—Payment in Full or Term of Assessment (8, 12, or 20 years). An invoice will accompany Letter #5 for property owners who previously elected the Payment in Full option. The City will send this letter to property owners within two weeks of project completion.
8. Letter #6 (Notice of Tax Levy)—This letter is the City Clerk’s official notice of the tax levy for assessed improvements, which will appear on the property owner’s property tax bill if that property owner chose the Term of Assessment payment option. The City Clerk’s Office will mail the letter in September before the City Council holds its public hearing to assess the tax levies.