Cheney Free Press -

By JOHN McCALLUM
Managing Editor 

Fire station upgrades, well 3 top improvement plan lists

 


Cheney’s Planning Commission approved an annual update to the city’s six-year capital improvements plan at its regular meeting in June. The plan identifies project the city views as essential to maintaining established levels of service (LOS) over the next six years, and names revenue sources to be pursued in bringing those projects to fruition.

Senior planner Brett Lucas told the commission the improvements plan is a smaller portion of two other plans the city utilizes when it comes to handling growth: the capital facilities element and the capital facilities plan. The first on is a larger view approach to planning, Lucas said, while the second is a 20-year document included in Cheney’s comprehensive plan.

The improvements plan listed projects and equipment needs in 10 different areas, ranging from water to streets, public safety and even the city-owned Sterling Moorman House. Projects were prioritized using three designations: deficiency, preservation and growth. The first addresses a technical or regulatory deficiency; the second preserves an existing facility or system component while the third serves development or expansion of a system component needed to address growth.

The largest item on any of the lists is a $3 million upgrade to the city’s fire station, identified as preservation or LOS level two. Although a funding source hasn’t been identified, the project is tagged for 2019.

The second largest item is partially funded and scheduled to begin later this summer: redrilling of the city’s potable water well 3, priced at $1.8 million. The redrill is listed as LOS one, and city officials hope its success will add another well to the city’s system for use during irrigation season.

Public Works Director Todd Ableman told the commission the city received $750,000 from the state in order to begin the design and drilling portion of the project, which is located on Erie Street near Park View Apartments. The state Department of Health recently signed off on the city’s drilling documents, and once the well’s production level is known, the city will put out calls for bids for pumping infrastructure later this year or early in 2019.

Public safety also included the third largest purchase — the fire department’s $804,000 main attack engine replacement, scheduled for delivery later this year. The city is using $200,000 of its own money generated through the public safety levy lid lift, and a $600,000 loan from the state’s LOCAL fund.

Park projects proposed include a $500,000 refurbishment and enhancement of the city’s pool, tabbed for 2020, and $150,000 to replace the existing wading pool with a splash pad in 2019. In an email, Ableman said the pool work is designed to address preservation of the 50-plus year-old facility as well as growth.

“Pool improvements include building, plumbing, mechanical and pool lighting upgrades,” he said. “New improvements proposed are a new water slide, snack stand and possibly expanding the sitting area around the pool between the pool and North Seventh (street).”

To pay for it, the city is anticipating receiving $240,000 in park impact fees in 2020 — money paid by developers in lieu of building new parking facilities. They’re also looking at applying for up to $250,000 in parks and recreation grant funding.

Many of the other items in the improvement plan are projects that get carried over each year or are ongoing work, such as an annual $200,000 estimated expenditure in the light department for pole replacement. Others are needs such as the replacement of aging equipment.

John McCallum can be reached at jmac@cheneyfreepress.com.

 

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