By Mason W. Canales

Killeen Daily Herald

COPPERAS COVE - The City Council on Tuesday approved an engineer to design, survey and administer two Copperas Cove Economic Development Corporation projects at a cost of about $350,000.

Waco-based Walker Partners Engineers and Surveyors will do the preconstruction work for straightening Old Copperas Cove Road and designing the Narrows Business and Technology Park for the corporation after the council took action on the two issues.

"This is something we have been talking about for a long time," said Polo Enriquez, executive director of the Cove EDC, regarding the road straightening project.

The project already is in the corporation's budget, but Enriquez didn't have the engineers construction cost estimates for the project readily available.

He said he hoped the project would be bid before the end of the year, as its construction should be tied into the U.S. Highway 190 and Shops at Five Hills work already under way.

"The biggest part of the project is expanding (the road) out and making it enough lanes for people to use it," said Enriquez. "And for people to safely exit and get back on the highway."

Walker Partners had priced its engineering cost at $55,000 for the estimated half-mile of roadway from Constitution Drive to beyond U.S. 190. The engineers' fees for the business park will be about $298,000. The corporation will pay both costs.

"This project is like the first one but on steroids," said Enriquez about the business park before the council agreed with the corporation board's approval. "The dollars are much bigger and the project is much larger."

The business park is more than 70 acres, located to the south of the Shops at Five Hills and to the east of Constitution Drive.

According to city documents, the property will be designed to attract new primary employers to Copperas Cove, and it, too, is tied into the moving of U.S. 190.

Enriquez said the engineer already has estimated the construction of infrastructure to the park will cost about $2 million and the corporation will budget and expect to bid the project during the next fiscal year.

According to the corporation's bylaws, everything costing more than $25,000 also must be taken to the council for its approval.

Also Tuesday, the city council:

Accepted a petition for annexation of almost 43 acres of land in Mesa Verde at Skyline subdivision.

Authorized City Manager Andrea Gardner to enter into a grade crossing construction and maintenance agreement with the BNSF Railway Company.

Executed an agreement with Scott & White for medical direction by a physician to provide oversight to the Copperas Cove Fire Department.

Contact Mason W. Canales at or (254) 501-7474. Follow him on Twitter at KDHCoveEditor.

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