By Tim Kowols
The Sturgeon Bay Finance/Purchasing and Building Committee will weigh in on an over $250,000 expense to extend the lifespan of the Maple-Oregon Street Bridge. The Wisconsin Department of Transportation and the city agreed in 2008 that Sturgeon Bay would be responsible for the approaches to the four-lane bridge while the DOT would be in charge of the structure itself. The DOT is now asking the city to install a thin polymer overlay on the approaches to protect it from further damage and extend its lifespan another 8-12 years. Alderperson Barb Allmann was a member of the Sturgeon Bay Common Council at the time of the agreement, saying the bridge was built at a height so it would not need to be opened as frequently and the approaches were created on more affordable land in the nearby Tax Increment Financing district. Ten years is not a long lifespan for a road and Allmann says she has plenty of questions before she signs off on an expense this large.
Allmann says the bill has her second-guessing her call for a six-month enforcement of a Premier Resort Area Tax as this is a sign that more funds would be necessary to keep up with road repairs. The Finance/Purchasing and Building Committee meets at 4 p.m. Tuesday inside the Sturgeon Bay Council Chambers.