Expera planning to expand operations there, use loading dock
BY KEVIN BONESKE
Road weight limits on West Park Street behind the former Printpack building, where Expera plans to expand its operations in Rhinelander after purchasing the facility, would be lifted under an ordinance amendment backed Monday by the city’s Public Works Committee.
The amendment, which requires final approval by the full City Council, would allow trucks with a gross weight exceeding six tons to access the loading dock behind the building along West Park Street from Arbutus Street and also keeps in place the gross weight limit of six tons on all vehicle axles or a combination of vehicles on Moen Street, where residential properties are located.
“With all the concerns we’ve heard over the years from Moen Street, I think this is the best route,” said committee member Steve Sauer.
Public works director Tim Kingman said that though both Moen and Park Street have been rebuilt to be capable of handling the weight of a truck, it would be a reasonable restriction to keep trucks weighing more than six tons out of a residential area.
“Typically you won’t put weight restrictions on roads that are capable of bearing the loads,” Kingman said. “Yet, it’s a thing that’s used out there in this world – that’s fine – but you don’t really have to restrict traffic on it.
“The backlash of this is that when trucks are trying to get in and out of there, it is probably a little simpler for them to have both directions. Another backlash of this is that you have area residents who would clearly prefer that trucks do not travel down there.”
“I think that was kind of the gist of restricting the flow on Moen Street was to keep the semi traffic out of that section of that residential neighborhood, where we’ve been getting complaints of traffic and speeders and everything else since it’s been reconfigured,” added Public Works Committee chairman Tom Gleason.
The suggested signage to go along with the amendment to lift the weight restrictions on West Park Street calls for having signs about the Moen Street six-ton weight limit at both the south and north end of Moen Street.
“I’m pretty sure I’ve seen trucks sneak out there on Moen Street before,” Kingman said. “I think there’s sort of this propensity for truck drivers to use it regardless of what signs are put in place.”