Soil samples taken to see if further excavation of soil is needed for downtown project

By Barbie Porter


Those visiting downtown Frazee may have noticed there hasn’t been much movement with the commercial building project in past weeks. 

During the monthly Frazee Economic Development Authority meeting on Tuesday, July 27, the group was told foundation remnants from past buildings were found in the soil along with other debris. The soil reportedly had not been adequately compacted either. 

A representative from the contractor that the EDA hired for the project, Bristlin Construction, broke the bad news. The Bristlin Construction representative said soil samples were taken to help determine what actions would be needed. While hoping for the option to leave the soil in place, it was stated the soil does not appear to be acceptable.

To be clear, it was noted specific areas where footings are placed may require soil excavation, not the entire project area. Additional soil excavation did raise some concern on the southwest side of the project, as well as near parts of the sidewalk along Main Avenue.

The Bristlin representative said there were two options being considered to deal with the soil problem. One was to lower the depth of the footings for the new commercial building on the end closest to the post office. Doing so would reduce the amount of excavation needed in that area. The other option was to remove the soil. 

The Bristlin representative said they discussed the option of removing the soil with a structural engineer. The concern was the removal of soil may undermine the post office building. However, the Bristlin representative said the structural engineer was not concerned about that with additional excavation.

Both options would be discussed further and reviewed. The EDA would be provided with more facts, as well as cost estimates for the additions to the project.

Also in the work zone, the EDA agreed to forgo purchasing a 25 foot strip of land owned by Tim Conklin that is located between the building they rent to Mahube-Otwa and the new commercial space.