Last week, Ginny Munroe from Marshall County Crossroads updated the County Commissioners on the various OCRA Stellar Communities Projects.  She said the county is in year three of implementing the projects.  The first year ended up being a COVID year and ended up being a planning year for the team because most of the state agencies weren’t doing much because of COVID.  Munroe said, “Really we are in year one and a half of implementation but we are literally almost done with most of the OCRA (Office of Community and Rural Affairs) projects in the plan.” 

She did a quick review of the OCRA projects which included the Argos Foker Park improvements including new restrooms, a fishing pier, a gazebo, and accessibility improvements.  It also has a new playground, pavilion, parking lot, and walking trail. Ginny said this project is complete.

The Argos Downtown Square Project is also completed and included the construction of a community building that honors the historic train depot, a performance stage, a public gathering space with seating, trees, lighting, and improved streetscapes and parking. 

In Bourbon, their Stellar Project was a wastewater improvement project that is complete.  This project followed the recommendation of Wessler Engineering’s preliminary engineering report for wastewater utility improvements.  The scope covered in the engineering report evaluated Bourbon’s existing sanitary sewer collection, conveyance, and treatment systems, comprehensively reviewing the existing system, identifying all associated constraints, and suggesting proposed mitigation solutions for the constraints.

In Bremen, the Jackson Street project is underway.  This project includes a flexible street that accommodates vehicles, parking, pedestrians, and accessibility for events.  A pavilion will cover parking spaces that will also provide space for the Farmers’ Market and a covered stage for events.  A green space will be located adjacent to the pavilion to provide a gathering area downtown.

The status of the project shows that the contract has been awarded to Brown & Brown General Contractors.  Bremen had its groundbreaking ceremony and construction is underway.

The Bremen Pool project will replace the current pool which is beyond its life expectancy and facing expensive repairs.  This project will create a new outdoor aquatics area and provide some accessibility and functional upgrades to the existing building.

Munroe told the commissioners they are working on the construction documents.  Tentatively they are planning to bid on this project later this summer or early this fall with construction to start yet this year.  Completion is anticipated for spring 2024 or early summer. 

Munroe discussed the Bremen Community Center project that hasn’t received OCRA dollars, but the private donations, local matching funds, and Crossroad funds have given the Bremen Community Cares Main Street organization the ability to continue making this a significant part of community life in Bremen and Marshall County.     


The Culver Stellar project was to replace the existing playground with an accessible and unique playground.  It also provides a gathering space with some outdoor seating, as well as sidewalks for the Farmers Market.

There are two Stellar projects in LaPaz.  The town saw the possibility of bringing water to the residents, businesses and industry.   To do that, they needed to complete a water study.  That study was completed in 2021 by OCAR.  It has officially been closed and the town is committed to moving forward with the project if grant funding can be obtained.  Munroe told the commissioners the town has contacted its rate consultant to complete a preliminary rate study, has the grant administrator working on an environmental review and the engineer is working with SRF to submit an application for funding under the Infrastructure Bill package in April 2022.  The hope is if enough grant funding can be obtained, the town will move forward with the installation of a municipal water utility which was estimated at $18 million. 

The second project in LaPaz is an update to the existing park.  The town has conducted public hearings for the improvement plans.  They are planning on numerous improvements, including two pickleball courts, a playground, parking improvements, and a sidewalk.

Munroe said phase II of River Park Square in Plymouth is substantially complete.  This project focused on honoring veterans with a plaza.  The project also included the addition of a nature playground, pavilion, sidewalks, improvements to the performance stage seating area, and lighting.