Our network

Environment

Orchard St. to close for storm sewer installation

Orchard St. to close for storm sewer installation

On Sept. 8 and Sept. 9, Badgerland Excavating will be installing a storm sewer connection in the 200 block of S. Orchard St.

This will require closing through-traffic on the block between Mound St. and Chandler St. from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. on both days. The roadway will be reopened at 5 p.m. on Monday for the overnight hours.

Local vehicles and pedestrian traffic will be maintained to all residences and businesses on the 200 block of S. Orchard St. at all times during this street closure.

Motorists and bicyclists are encouraged to use alternate routes to avoid delays during this closure.

A message from the MPD's Traffic Enforcement Safety Team

With the school year right around the corner, the Madison Police Department would like to remind Madison residents to slow down and obey school zone speed limits.

Watch for crossing guards and please follow their directions. Yield to pedestrians who are crossing the street and be aware of children present in the area.

Obey posted parking restrictions and park your vehicle accordingly.

The MPD considers School Zone safety a top priority and will be enforcing School Zone violations throughout the school year, to help keep children safe.

They also want to remind the public of Wisconsin State Statute 346.46 (2m) when approaching a crossing guard.

To read more about MPD rules and regulations, click here for more information.

Habitat for Humanity Seeking Families for Homes to be built in Sun Prairie, Fitchburg, Madison

Earlier this year, Habitat for Humanity of Dane County purchased 29 family unit lots in Sun Prairie and will be building homes in both the Uplands and Vandenburg Heights neighborhoods over the next several years, according to a press release.   Habitat also recently purchased 24 lots in Fitchburg in the Renaissance in the Park neighborhood and three lots in Southwest Madison.

For individuals and families interested in building with Habitat for Humanity of Dane County starting in 2015, informational meetings will be held:

$15M estimated cost of damage in Dane County from storms

$15M estimated cost of damage in Dane County from storms

Dane County officials said the cost of storm damage to area communities this week is estimated at more than $15 million, with about $10 million coming from damage to private property.

County Executive Joe Parisi's office said Thursday that tornadoes in Verona and Madison Tuesday and severe weather in eastern Dane County including Sun Prairie Wednesday damaged 253 homes and several businesses and public buildings. Nineteen homes reported major damage and two homes were destroyed beyond the point of repair.

Toxic algae spotted on Lake Mendota

Toxic algae spotted on Lake Mendota

Toxic algae were spotted on Lake Mendota near the University of Wisconsin campus and in Lake Waubesa, according to a release from UW officials.

Officials said cyanobacteria, or blue-green algae blooms, were spotted Tuesday in the area of Memorial Union and Hoofers.

The public is urged to avoid contact with the algae and not swim at night when the blooms can?t be seen.

The algae blooms occur when there is little wind and hot temperatures combined with lake nutrients.

Symptoms of a reaction to algae blooms include eye, throat, nose or skin irritation, and vomiting or diarrhea. These symptoms can happen between several hours and a few days after being exposed.

Mosquito season off to an annoying start

Mosquito season off to an annoying start

Mosquito season is off to an annoying start in northern Wisconsin, where the problem has been so bad that one canoeing company has been turning away customers rather than sending them out on a bug-infested river.

Fortunately, though, the rest of the summer might not be so bad. A Madison entomologist said early indications suggest this season may end up being no worse than usual, and that standard precautions might be enough to keep the pesky critters away.

Some hardware stores up north have been having trouble keeping bug repellent on the shelves, and some residents said they can't remember a summer with such abundant swarms.

PJ Liesch, who studies insects at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, was in northern Wisconsin over Memorial Day weekend. That Friday and Saturday were pleasantly mosquito-free, but hordes of the blood-sucking pests appeared as if out of nowhere that Sunday, he said.

City asks residents to help save the ash trees

City asks residents to help save the ash trees

At the end of March, the city's Parks Division launched an Adopt-A-Park-Tree Program intended to help save trees endangered by one of Madison's newest residents -- the emerald ash borer. The small, invasive green-colored beetles were first discovered in Madison last November. Originating from Asia, the insect's larvae feed on the inner bark of ash trees and have already killed millions of trees in other parts of Wisconsin and across the country.

"It is an invasive insect and 30 percent of the trees in our streetscape and the parks are ash," said Laura Whitmore, spokeswoman for the city of Madison Parks Division.