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Blackduck City Council approves football tower

After the Blackduck Planning Commission passed the motion to allow Blackduck Public Schools to rebuild its football tower, the matter was taken to the Blackduck City Council.

Andra Vaughn, activities director at BHS and football coach Jeff Volk were present at the City Council meeting on April 7 to clarify a few items that the commission had questioned and explain the need for the project.

The tower is planned to be on the opposite side of the current tower. Vaughn let the council know that they will be adding an additional 6 feet to each end of the tower.

The reason for enlarging the tower is to increase the size of the bathrooms from single stall to double stalls.

“We’re looking for approval to build this facility on our football field,” Vaughn said. “Our existing tower has been there for a number of years. It needs not only a great deal of work but we’ve kind of outgrown that.”

Vaughn added that they would like to have room for concession stands inside the tower and for visiting media. The increase would also add minimal storage.

Mayor Daryl Lundberg made the motion to approve the land use permit for the school based on the recommendation from the planning commission. Council member Mary Loeken seconded.

Vaughn said that the school hopes to break ground the last week of May and have the project finished by Aug. 1. So far, almost $12,000 has been raised toward the construction.

In administrative business, Stacy Gross, regional housing manager for the Schuett Companies Inc., which owns Blackduck Senior Apartments, was present at the meeting. She had questions regarding city inspection done at the building, which she noted that she was not opposed to.

Gross listed other inspections that their apartment complexes go through and said that typically they will pass them by a wide margin.

“We do fairly well in our management,” Gross said. “Of the 16 buildings that we professionally manage and own, four of those 16 have city inspections. Blackduck being one of those and then we get one bill for this inspection, which is Blackduck.”

Gross went on to say that she was looking for consideration of the council. She would provide other inspection reports that are done on the complex so they would not have to be billed. The council agreed to view the other inspection reports to make sure they covered everything that the city would before moving forward.

The council has also received one letter of interest for its vacancy from resident and planning commission member Sam Christensen. The council agreed to set up an interview.

Jillian Gandsey

Jillian Gandsey is the Multimedia Editor at the Bemidji Pioneer. She is an Iron Range native and a 2013 graduate of Bemidji State University. Follow Jillian on Twitter and Instagram @jilliangandsey. Contact her at 218-333-9786, 218-996-1216 or at 

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