ST. CLOUD -- Now that a new Tech High School will be built in south St. Cloud, city officials are working to move up road construction plans for 33rd Street South.

City Engineer Steve Foss says the discussions are centered around trying to move up the timeline for two phases of that corridor which are included in their Capital Improvement Program.  The move is to accommodate the school's planned opening in the fall of 2019.

Foss says the first phase will be to make 33rd Street South a four-lane divided roadway from Southway Drive to Cooper Avenue. They hope to start that project in 2018 rather than 2019 when it was originally scheduled to begin. Federal funding will cover $1,500,000 of the approximately $2,700,000 cost.  However, the city would have to cover the cost of the entire project initially, before getting reimbursed the federal portion in 2019.

Phase two will expand 33rd Street to four lanes from County Road 74 on the west end, out to County Road 136 in 2019 rather than in 2020. The project would also include extending sewer and water to the Tech site.  The cost of that project is estimated at $3,200,000 and could be paid for using Municipal State Aid, local option sales tax, general revenue bonds, and possibly state bonding money.  Foss says no federal money would be available for this phase.

Finally, the last phase between Cooper Avenue and County Road 136 won't be completed until probably 2021 or 2022.  Once completed, 33rd Street South will become a four-lane divided roadway for the length of the corridor between County Road 75 on the east end to County Road 74 on the west end.  Foss says they will likely apply for more federal money to help pay the estimated $5,000,000 cost of that phase, but will need other funding options to help cover the cost.

City officials will begin updating the Capital Improvement Program in December and Foss said they should have a determination whether they can move up the construction in the next few months.

More From AM 1240 WJON