Local environmentalists are challenging city plans to install new sidewalks on street-sides that don’t have them.
Catherine Tunis, who served on the city’s Task Force for Environmental Action, and as chair of the city’s Environmental Committee (suspended), said sidewalks are unnecessary on the small streets in question, and would damage the environment.
She also said the money from the speed camera fund could be used elsewhere. One of her compatriots discovered that changes in state law allow a wider use of money from speed camera fines. The city was under the misapprehension that it could only be used for pedestrian safety.
The city has put the sidewalk-building on hold until staff and council can review the matter.
The county’s procedure seems topsy-turvy to the city council. In order to consider whether or not to annex Flower Avenue the city must first pass a resolution that explains what we would do with it – IF we decide to annex it. Normally, if the council passes a resolution it means they made a decision on it. But, that’s not the case this time. So DON’T PANIC, Dear Readers, when you read that the city voted on Flower Avenue annexation. The city is not committed to anything except weighing whether to annex it or not.
In fact, the council is worried about where the money to fix Flower will come from. The state WAS going to pay for repairs, but that was before the public demanded the council dump the deal with the State Highway Administration that would swap Flower Avenue swap for Route 410.
Can You Dig It?
The Public Works Department renovation is on schedule and on budget, reports the city manager. Or it WAS on budget until the contractor ran into “bad soil” (uncompressed soil that requires deeper supports), and the remains of an old building that had to be removed. That will run the city an unexpected $11,000 additional.
This will confirm the deepest fears (or hopes) of some residents who await the Second Debacle. The first Debacle was the community center construction, which ran into unexpected and expensive complications and cost overruns, and ended up without a gym, which was its original purpose.
Your Gilbert thinks $11,000 is small potatoes compared to that.