Local News

North Platte City Council members needed no persuasion Monday night that the road leading into River’s Edge Golf Course has become a crumbling mess.

But accepting it as a formal city street might not be the best way to get it fixed, council members told the course’s general manager and a neighboring business owner Monday night.

Randy Richards, owner of Richards Financial at 501 W. 18th St., presented his concerns and those of River’s Edge manager Bear Jorgenson at the end of the council work session featuring Chief Development Inc.’s proposed projects near Interstate 80.

Richards’ office building sits just north of West 18th and Ash streets. The deteriorated asphalt road that runs west from there to Another Round Sports Bar and Grill would officially extend 18th by five blocks if dedicated to the city.

Between the age of the road surface and recent months’ snows and rain, “the blacktop has exploded,” Richards said. “There’s divots.”

He said Jorgenson and his workers at the onetime North Platte Country Club have done “a fantastic job” keeping the road more or less operable.

But given the many public and school golf events at River’s Edge and the community functions hosted by Another Round, “at this point, it’s kind of an embarrassment,” Richards said.

Because the road inside River’s Edge sits on private property, City Administrator Jim Hawks said, city crews can’t work on it unless it’s accepted as a city street.

But Councilman Andrew Lee said the would-be new stretch of West 18th would have to meet city standards. It’s so degraded that it likely would have to be rebuilt from the subgrade up, City Engineer Tom Werblow added, likely costing $250,000 or more for the five-block length.

“It’s not as simple as an overlay,” Werblow said.

Several council members suggested that residents in other parts of North Platte wouldn’t welcome adding the River’s Edge road to the city’s grid.

“If I voted to use tax dollars to fix that street, I probably would have to move,” said Councilman Ed Rieker, whose Ward 4 north of the Union Pacific tracks includes River’s Edge.

Rieker agreed with a suggestion by Councilman Ty Lucas that River’s Edge approach the Quality Growth Fund, which reserves 10% of its dedicated sales tax dollars for awards for “private business purposes.”

Richards and Jorgenson agreed. Curbs and gutters aren’t needed, Richards said, and a rebuilt asphalt road would do the job “without having to replace your shocks after traveling up and down that road.”

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