Two construction projects moved ahead at the Fairmont City Council meeting on Monday.

Reconstruction of Lake Avenue from East Fourth Street to Downtown Plaza will enter the initial planning phase.

The council approved hiring Bolton & Menk to provide engineering services for the Lake Avenue project.

Although the project is on the 2019 improvement schedule, the complexity of planning and design as well as public engagement, traffic modeling, intersection design, signal design and cross-section revisions will push construction back a year.

A tentative timeline offered by Bolton & Menk lists an open house in March to provide information to businesses and residents along Lake Avenue and to interested residents.

The project to replace the Pioneer Bridge is ready for bids.The old Pioneer Bridge, which was torn down in February 2017 due to safety concerns, will be replaced with a 12-foot wide pedestrian structure. Bids will be opened on Feb. 20, and construction will begin this summer.

The council approved a 3 percent hike in water rates, effective in February billing, to fund current and future capital projects. The increase, which was recommended by the Public Utilities Commission, will cost an average residential water customer about $1.35 more per month.

The council approved the mayor’s appointment of Chantill Kahler Royer to the Fairmont Economic Development Authority.

The investment report from Dec. 31, 2018 showed the city’s investments earned $474,000 in interest, an increase of $136,000 from 2017.

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