Delay upsets city

Published 12:00 am Sunday, August 11, 2002

Features Editor

The city of Brundidge is in a position to take advantage of

$1.8 million matching fund EDA grant to make improvements that will open avenues for future economic development. However, the inability to come to an agreement with a land owner on the value of his property threatens to sidetrack the project.

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The city has offered Melvin Dierkshiede of Elba, $5,600 for 2.43 acres needed to provide a paved road and water and sewer lines on the east side of the tracks to serve Southern Classic Food Group on the north side of town. Dierkshiede is asking $48,000 for the acreage.

"The offer the city made to Dierkshiede was based on the appraised value of the property," Thomas said. "In order to make certain that we are offering him the fair market price for his property, we had the property reappraised Friday and will get the report on Monday. On Tuesday, the city council will reconvene and make a decision on which way we want to go with the project."

The city’s preferred plan is to access the Southern Classic Food Group property along the east side of the railroad track with a paved road about .6 miles in length. The water and sewer lines would also be run on the the east side of the railroad, making those services available to the seven property owners in that area.

In addition, the property owners would have the benefit of storm drainage, fire protection and street lights.

The residents of Log Road would also benefit from having the services on the east side of the tracks. Log Road is accessed by the dirt road that runs parallel to the railroad track. Three houses are located on Log Road and do not have the benefit of city sewage.

The inability to reach an agreement with Dierkshiede would mean a loss of services to him and the other property owners and the possible loss of a paving on Log Road.

"It would wise for the city to use city funds to pave Log Road as part of the paving project," Thomas said. "We just wouldn’t want a dirt road running off a newly paved road."


an agreement is not reached with Dierkshiede, the city will abandoned those plans and access the Southern Classic Food Group from Highway 93 and sewer lines will be run along the west side of the railroad tracks.

Thomas said the project will be far less expensive going that route.

"The cost of running a paved road from Southern Express Restaurant to Southern Classic Foods is about $540,000 and the cost of running the water and sewer lines is around $250,000. If we access the industry off Highway 93, we already have water lines there. We would have to run sewer lines and improve the railroad crossing off


Looking at the options from a dollar standpoint, the route along Highway 93 would be the most economical, but looking up the road to the future, Thomas said, the more costly route would be the most beneficial in the long run.

"Not only would it benefit the city as far as future economic development on the east side of the railroad, it would open up the property for those seven owners," Thomas said.

The Brundidge Council Council will reconvene at 4 p.m. Tuesday. At that time, the council is expected to make a decision on the project so that work can begin without further delay.