If property owners along Osage in the eastern section of the city give the go-ahead, a public improvement program will carry streetscape improvements on West Osage to the eastern city limits.
A new street, stormwater lines, curbs, sidewalks, vintage lights and trees that replicate the improvements on West Osage would be installed.
“Now it is your turn to see these improvements in your area,” the accompanying letter from City Administrator Harold Selby said.
“We would like to get this out for bid this year,” he said. “What you need to do is sign the second page and have it notarized.”
The boundaries of the two-mile-long district extend from Western Avenue on the west to Clear Creek Road on the east.
Property owners within the boundaries of the proposed improvements have received information packets and petitions needed to form a community improvement district (CID) in their neighborhood.
If more than 50 percent of the voting property owners return the signed petitions, the city will form the CID and enact a special sales tax to raise funds for improvements.
Construction would take place in 2013.
Property owner Keith Bruns, who owns seven parcels in the proposed CID, says he’s pleased that the process has begun.
“This end of town has been cheated,” Bruns says. “The squeaky wheel gets the oil so maybe it’s as much the fault of east end businesses for not speaking up as it is the city leaders, but it’s time to move forward.”
Bruns said he has been in favor of the improvement district since it was first proposed.
Owners of 100 parcels, including residential, business, church and school, fire and ambulance district properties located within the CID boundaries, received ballots. Some property owners own more than one and will be allowed to sign the petition for each parcel.
Special sales taxes collected in the CID can only be spent on improvements within the district.
Life of the CID will be 20 years, but the city has the discretion to terminate the CID earlier provided that the costs of all the improvements are fully paid.
Estimated cost of the street improvements is $1,092,041, which will be funded with an 80 percent, 20 percent federal grant. The city’s share of the road improvement grant would be $273,011.
The city’s total expenditure for the improvement, including 20 percent grant share, application fee and engineering is $446,325.
Two additional improvement projects are to be funded with CID taxes. Improvements on Union Street between Viaduct and Payne streets will include sidewalks, pedestrian bridge, curb and gutter, asphalt overlay, striping and detectable warning.
Cost of the work is estimated at $183,341, with $27,501 in engineering for a total of $210,843.
The city also plans to install curb and gutter, asphalt overlay and striping at the Adam’s Garden parking lot for a total cost of $5,211.
All the improvements combined will enhance the appearance of the eastern entrance to the city, according to Bruns who agreed from the first announcement of the CID to help promote the improvement district.
“For businesses on the east end, this has been a long time coming,” Bruns said. “It will help everyone.”
Anyone with questions regarding the CID can contact Selby at 636-271-0500, extension 213.