College Park stormwater project set to begin soon

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St. Anthony Park dog walkers and Frisbee players who frequent College Park will have to find a new venue this fall. The park will become a heavy construction zone by early October when the City of St. Paul begins its stormwater infiltration-and-treatment project in the southwestern area of the park.

The project’s aim is to curb the amount of pollutants running into the Mississippi River from stormwater runoff and to control the water that pours into the park after a heavy rainfall.

Area residents can expect a lot of truck and construction traffic, according to Bruce Elder, sewer utility manager at St. Paul Public Works.

“People should watch out,” he said, “and keep kids safe.” The beginning of the project will be “intense for a couple of weeks,” Elder said. And though the construction site will be fenced in, “Children should be told not to be at that end of the park.”

All construction equipment will be entering at the north side of the park just east of Hythe Street.

The bulk of the work is the excavation to place pipe in the ground, said Elder. Then grass will be planted in the spring, which means the area will be off-limits until turf is established.

For those who worry about spending a winter away from Suicide Hill, College Park’s notorious sledding hill, Elder said the city will be able to accommodate sledders by using hay bales to block the project area. The city has awarded a $945,000 contract to Bolander and Sons of St. Paul to do the project.