Volunteers sought for Marquette beautification committee

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By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times 

Marquette mayor Larry Breuer is looking for community members who would like to be part of a community beautification committee.

“I’d like to start a volunteer committee to put together some programs to better certain areas of town,” Breuer said at the city council’s regular meeting Nov. 15.

Breuer said he’d like the committee to target three areas, beginning with the entrance to Marquette on Highway 76. There, he explained, he’d like to see the west side of the road cleaned up, presenting a better impression to those entering town.

Another target area, he added, is Emma Big Bear Trail, the road that leads up to the new overlook/old bridge approach.

“It could stand some plantings,” he said.

Finally, Breuer said, it would be good to focus on improving the bluff side along Edgar Street.

Council meeting change

The council approved an ordinance changing its regular meeting date from the third Tuesday of each month to the second Tuesday of each month.

Purple martin birdhouses

The council approved providing poles for the construction of two purple martin birdhouses on the Marquette riverfront. 

The houses, which were the idea of resident Dennis Mason, will be built by the inmates from Luster Heights. They will go up every spring, then come down each fall, to be cleaned.

“They are fun to watch,” said councilman Steve Eagle of the purple martins, which are large, broad-chested swallows. Males are dark blue-purple in color, while females are more brown. The birds are quick and agile fliers, and they feed and nest in flocks.

Many currently live on the bench in Marquette, said councilwoman Pam Brodie-Fitzgerald.

“The houses are condos, so there will be several [birds] in each one,” she noted. “Having them down at the park will be nice. It will be a healthier environment for them.”

Evans agreement

The council approved an agreement with property owner Dave Evans to extend the timeframe for which he has to build his home at the Timber Ridge Subdivision. Evans will have until March 1 to complete his home and remove the mobile home on the property.

Riverfront parking

In the last few months, the council has had several discussions about whether a parking area on the city’s riverfront that’s restricted to resident use only, with a permit, is legal. 

Breuer said the council would like more time to consider the issue, and will revisit it at its February meeting. 

“I want input from the community,” Breuer said. “We want a happy medium to solve this problem.”

For now, Breuer said, the signs have been taken down, allowing anyone to park in the north riverfront lot.

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