Starting 2018 with to-do-list of design, construction, renovation projects
A new year almost always ushers in new projects for cities, counties and other governmental entities. Some boards and councils are discussing plans for all types of projects.
The town of Ingleside wants to alleviate traffic starting at the city’s welcome sign off of Highway 361 to Farm-to-Market Road 1069. The new State Highway 200 would be 2-miles long and cost $17 million. The town has environmental clearance and is currently working to secure right-of-way.
El Paso Community College (EPCC) has plans to construct a building for additional classrooms and 400-space parking garage near Oregon and Montana streets. The estimated $25 million project could be approved by El Paso City Council members this month. The planned parking garage sits on a historical site, so approval was also needed by the Historic Landmark Commission. A cement rock wall from the 1970s is located on the property. EPCC plans to begin the search for a contractor in February.
The city of Robinson began the year with discussions on maintenance and repairs of streets. City council members approved to bid out projects for Hillview Drive, Lou Drive, Bunker Drive, McLendon Drive and Beard Avenue. Work on the roads and drainage improvements is estimated to cost $1.76 million.
The city of Rollingwood has agreed to a contract with an architectural firm to review the space needs of city buildings and produce a facilities master plan and budget. Part of the plan is to either build a new city hall and repurpose the current one or just renovate the standing structure. Other facilities included in the study are the police department, municipal court and public works.
Ovilla city leaders plan to hire a company to survey residents as they continue developing a master plan for the city’s park system. Residents could provide input on amenities they would like to have at the parks. The plan is to seek input from January to July and then apply for grants with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. The company hired to perform the survey will also see if existing parks need improvements and which ones are underutilized.
The Aransas County Commissioners Court approved in December to issue a request for qualifications for architectural services. The county wants to replace the current courthouse, built in 1956, that was damaged beyond repair by Hurricane Harvey. The current courthouse had also become too small for its growing population and had old wiring. The cost of the rebuild is unknown, but the county would like to use Federal Emergency Management Dollars and private donations.
Socorro city council members are considering the construction of a new arterial road that would connects to Interstate 10. The Metropolitan Planning Organization has approved the road project and now an environmental study must be completed. The plan is to connect the arterial road to Bauman Road, where an elementary school is located. Socorro will have to put up 20 percent of the project cost which accounts for a little more than $3.5 million.
The Port of Galveston’s governing board is ready to develop a strategic plan in 2018. Port officials want to pursue more cargo opportunities, build a new bridge to Pelican Island, develop a container terminal, build another cruise terminal and to make the port more scenic, attractive and integrated with the town.
Activity will only increase as the year progresses. 2018 is shaping up to be a productive one for cities and counties throughout the country.