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By LeAnn R. Ralph
COLFAX — Construction on the expansion at Timber Technologies is expected to begin next spring after the weight limits are taken off local roads.
Dale Schiferl, co-owner of Timber Technologies, attended the November 26 meeting of the Colfax Village Board to provide an update on the project.
Timber Technologies is planning to build a 25,000 square foot expansion to enclose the yard where the lumber is stored.
“We were hoping to be turning dirt by now, but it didn’t work out that way,” Schiferl said.
The project has gone through several sets of civil engineering plans to reach the point where Schiferl and his business partner, Tom Niska, feel comfortable that the plans are achievable.
Schiferl attended a village board meeting August 13 to seek approval for putting a culvert under Bremer Avenue to drain a retention pond that will be a necessary part of the expansion.
The Colfax Village Board unanimously approved the Bremer Avenue culvert at the August meeting.
The state Department of Natural Resources has approved the plan for handling run-off from the Timber Tech property, and the DNR is not requesting any further changes, Schiferl said, noting the DNR has issued a permit to Timber Tech.
The culvert will still need to be part of the project, Schiferl said, adding that he had hoped to install the culvert farther west along Bremer Avenue but there are too many fiber optic cables.
The culvert will be coming off the northeast corner of the retention pond, he said.
The expansion project will require one thousand truckloads of fill. Half of the fill needed will come from excavating for the retention pond, and the other half will be hauled into Colfax from a location a little more than four miles away, Schiferl said.
The main entrance to the yard will be moving, and Schiferl noted there was no streetlight where the new entrance will be and that a streetlight might be beneficial for “safety purposes.”
The streetlights belong to Xcel Energy, said Rand Bates, director of public works.
Bates said he would talk to Xcel Energy about installing a streetlight at that location.
Schiferl said he had a list of questions about other issues as well, and Gary Stene, village president, suggested Schiferl could meet with Bates and Lynn Niggemann, village administrator-clerk-treasurer, about the items on his list.
Stene noted Timber Technologies is in a Tax Increment Financing District, and the village board should look at ways to use the TIF district to help Timber Technologies with the new project.
“We will get it back through an increase in the taxes (the expansion) will generate,” Stene said.
The Village of Colfax has always been supportive of Timber Technologies, Schiferl said.
“We would really appreciate any help you can give us,” he said.