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Lathrop moving to 12 acres on Louise Ave.

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POSTED December 17, 2009 1:57 a.m.

LATHROP – The City of Lathrop may soon be able to move its corporation yard from its old and cramped location to a spacious 12-acre property on Louise Avenue. The new site, which was purchased by the city a few years ago, at one time housed a business called Lague Sales which sold government surplus materials and equipment.

The first step leading to the official occupation of the new corporation yard was affirmed Tuesday night when the council approved a resolution giving City Manager Cary Keaten the authority to sign an agreement with the engineering and architectural company selected to implement the first of the two phases that will be involved in the redesigning and renovation of the property’s existing metal building. The firm selected to implement this initial phase of the project, which will include looking into designing office space inside the building, is ATI Architects and Engineers.

Cost for Phase 1 is not to exceed $6,000 and will include a feasibility study on project alternatives and costs. Related construction issues that will include permitting and bidding on the project plus construction services will comprise Phase 2.

The city for years has been looking for a property and appropriate location to house all of its heavy equipment. Not only is the current location on Seventh Street next to the Skate Park too small and cramped, the building that also doubles as office for city staff is too old and is in advanced stage of deterioration. The white building used to be office of the Lathrop County Water District, the precursor of the city’s Public Works Department. It was also the meeting place for other unincorporated Lathrop groups such as the Manteca-Lathrop Fire District board of directors and the Lathrop Municipal Advisory Council which was the precursor of the city council.

The former Lague Sales building and acreage property will house not only the city corporation yard but also the proposed arsenic-reduction treatment facility for the city’s water wells. Arsenic reduction in the city’s water wells to mandated levels is required by the government.

Moving the corporation from its location on Seventh Street will leave this whole block – bounded by Thomsen to the south, Sixth Street to the west, and L Street to the north – open to further development of this city block into other uses such as the proposed Teen Center. In addition to the skate park, this city property is the location of a Head Start Early Child Development facility which relocated to Lathrop from a property of the University of the Pacific in Stockton. Head Start’s move involved an agreement between this early-education program and Lathrop which allowed the former to pay the city an annual rent of just $1 in exchange for the city’s use of the building when classes are not in session.

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