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With the date for Prime Inc. to move into its brand-new location in the city's Industrial Park III just around the proverbial corner, Decatur City Council on Tuesday night authorized work to be concluded on improvements to County Road 450 as well as adding and changing lane markings there.
The Prime site is located west of All American Homes and northwest of Walmart.
The Springfield, Missouri-based firm has replaced Ruan as the trucking operator for Bunge North America. Originally planning to get into its new site in the spring, Prime was constantly hampered by weather, though, and has been operating out of the former Ruan site on Washington St. for several months.
It now expects to move operations to the new site on November 1.
Part of its agreement with the City of Decatur calls for improvements to CR 450, most of which involved widening the road by four feet to the west end of the Industrial Park.
Mayor John Schultz said at Tuesday's meeting that the city has fallen some $4,800 short of completing the work, and recommended that that amount be taken from its CEDIT (County Economic Development Income Tax) funds — which provided most of the funding for the earlier work.
"This is going to be a good improvement," the mayor said, and council readily agreed, lending its unanimous approval.
The work is expected to start soon — weather permitting — as city officials want to be finished by the time Prime moves in.
Lane markings are another part of the project, and council gave Street/Sanitation Superintendent Jeremy Gilbert permission to use $7,605 already his budget for that effort. That will include remarking CR 450 from the Walmart entrances/exits to S. 13th St.
"That's definitely a safety concern we would like to address" before Prime moves in, Gilbert told council. Some of the original markings have worn off and "many people think it's a three-lane road, but it's not," Gilbert said.
The current markings lead to confusion for drivers and that could become a much more dangerous situation when the Prime trucks are using the road, he said later.