East Grand Forks Council members consider quotes for improvements outside of VFW Arena

The two quotes came from Opp Construction, which was the lowest bidder at $119,026.20, and from H&S Construction, in the amount of $125,547.

East Grand Forks City Hall
East Grand Forks City Hall. File photo Brandi Jewett/ Grand Forks Herald
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EAST GRAND FORKS – City Council members reviewed the two quotes received for improvements on drainage and pedestrian issues outside of the East Grand Forks VFW Arena during Tuesday's work session meeting.

Last month, Parks and Recreation Superintendent Reid Huttunen asked City Engineer Steve Emery to look into the possibility of adding a new storm drain in an area between the VFW Arena and Blue Line Club Arena that’s prone to flooding.

While the issue of standing water has existed for many years, the issue of water running back into the arena was new this spring. Frost has heaved the concrete and asphalt leading to the doors of the south entrance of the VFW Arena, which has caused a slope where water will flow into the arena rather than away from it.

The two quotes came from Opp Construction, which was the lowest bidder at $119,026.20, and from H&S Construction, in the amount of $125,547. Both quotes were higher than the engineer’s estimate of $87,222.

Emery gave the council some options that could cut the total costs. One was to take out the sidewalks and the concrete driveway between the two arenas, which would cost around $80,754. The other would entail taking out the sidewalks and fixing the pavement in the area where it is prone to flooding, which would cost around $93,344.


Council member Brian Larson said he would like to see the entire project completed in order to keep the arena maintained.

“I think we've got to make sure we stop water getting into this building. That’s just our responsibility,” Larson said.

Council member Mark Olstad shared Larson’s thoughts.

“I would probably lean toward doing the whole project since we need to make it last longer, make sure we’re taking care of it,” Olstad said.

Funding for the project will come from the Storm Sewer Enterprise Fund.


In other council news Tuesday:

  • Council members reviewed the 2021 comprehensive financial report and audit findings. Some of the fund balances that increased included the general fund balance, which increased by $44,354, and the capital projects fund balance, which increased by $204,492. Fund balances that decreased included the current cities fund balance, which saw a decrease of $237,175; the 2017 assessment bonds fund balance, which saw a decrease of $134,829; and the non-major governmental fund balance, which saw a decrease of $174,506.
  • The council received a request to approve the updated Title VI and Limited English Proficiency Plan for Cities Area Transportation. In accordance with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, recipients of federal financial assistance can’t discriminate in the level and quality of transportation services and transit-related benefits on the basis of race, color, or national origin. Special emphasis is also placed on people with limited English proficiency. The city of East Grand Forks and CAT are required to submit a joint Title VI and LEP Plan to the Federal Transit Administration every three years.
Meghan Arbegast grew up in Security-Widefield, Colorado. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Journalism from North Dakota State University in Fargo, in 2021.

Arbegast wrote for The Spectrum, NDSU's student newspaper, for three years and was Head News Editor for two years. She was an intern with University Relations her last two semesters of college.

Arbegast covers news pertaining to the city of Grand Forks/East Grand Forks including city hall coverage.

Readers can reach Arbegast at 719-235-8640 or

Pronouns: She/Her
Languages: English
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