Drivers have been using the new sections of Third Street NE since July 1, but that doesn’t mean the project is finished.

  The Belmond City Council learned Monday night that three driveway approaches need to be repaired, the concrete around several storm sewers has cracked, and several curbs are broken. In the past week, the contractor started making some of these concrete repairs.

  But the problems don’t stop there. As much as 40% of the sod planted along the new street has died. Public Works Director Justin Fournier told the council, “Not only has a lot of the sod died, but some of it hasn’t rooted for some reason. The contractor is going to replace the sod — it’s all under warranty. But I’m wondering if winter seeding for growth next spring would work better.”

  Fournier said he has talked to many of the homeowners along the route, explaining how to care for the new sod. “They’ve got to water it and not mow it so short.”

  Fournier also alerted city leaders to new rules coming down from Washington, D.C. regarding lead water lines. New requirements from the EPA may mean most cities will be doing a lot of digging.

  “It isn’t all set yet,” stated the public works director. “But the government doesn’t want any lead water service lines. I’m sure we have some in the older part of town. But it can be hard to find them. I’m going to be in contact with a company that can somehow detect lead lines. We don’t have to do anything right now, but it’s coming.” He added that someday soon there could be a lot of front yards dug up.