Letter to the editor: The year 2012 in review
By: Randy Bolen, Two Harbors Mayor, Lake County News Chronicle
The year 2012 has been a productive and busy year for the City of Two Harbors. We had a new $3.5 million water tower go online and had the old tower demolished.
We had a tremendous year at the city owned campground and anticipate opening up our new $1.3 million 36- site campground expansion in 2013.
At our airport, the taxiway and parking lots saw surface improvements and in 2013 the city will be taking an aggressive role in marketing our airport for various economic development opportunities.
Next, for the first time in over a decade the city took a different approach to our streets and sidewalks and initiated a program that saw six avenues get surface upgrades and a whole city block get new sidewalks. In 2013 we'll focus on fixing our alleys, as well as fixing up more sidewalks and avenues.
In conjunction with the state and DNR, we opened phase one of the boat launch and parking areas in Agate Bay. This $2.1 million improvement was long overdue and the city will be taking the lead role in 2013 in getting phase two-- safe harbor and marina-- started.
Due to retirements, we hired three new police officers and also hired a new public works superintendent. Our police department took delivery of a new squad SUV and implemented a new surveillance camera system in our parks and at the Breakwall. Our fire department took delivery of a new aerial truck.
Behind the arena at the skate park, a new skate boarding surface was put down and new equipment was purchased. We opened a new trail segment around County Road 26, and the city will install lights for added safety in 2013.
Our golf course saw dramatic improvements and increased rounds from previous years.
The city signed an agreement with the county to start the demolition of the old roundhouse and J & J Properties. The concept is to bring the nine buildings to grade and continue to market the area as a shovel- ready economic development site with road, rail and water access. A number of initiatives related to this property are already getting tremendous traction. The buildings are slated for demo this winter.
The city is working with a variety of businesses all over the community to bring jobs and economic development to our area.
The city, in part, sponsored a number of projects throughout the year that brought entertainment and enjoyment to our community, including: Winter Frolic, Chalk-Fest, Kidz Block Party, Heritage Days, the Outdoor Movie Project, Winter Wonderland at the Bandshell, Kayak Festival, Friday Concerts at the Bandshell, Mayors Block Party, the Minnesota Street Rod Association Fall Campout, and of course, our wonderful Thursday night concerts with our very own Two Harbors City Band at the Bandshell.
The City of Two Harbors was able to accomplish all of this, and keep the tax levy the same for the last three years.
These are just a sample of the projects and initiatives we have been working on in 2012 in Two Harbors.
In 2013, we'll continue to take aggressive steps to move our community forward; all while paying respect to our heritage and culture.