EDMOND — A list of possible long-term capital improvement projects needed for Edmond over the next 15 years was presented to city council members this week. The estimated price tag is almost $150 million.
The big question is how to pay for the projects.
“This is not a wish list,” City Manager Larry Stevens said in a workshop with council members and department heads. “We are fairly certain these need to be done.”
Voters in 2000 approved a 3/4 cent sales tax for capital projects. The special tax came with a list of projects residents wanted done.
All of the projects, except one, has started or been completed, said Herb Blomquist, public works director.
A road project along Coltrane Road hasn’t started because city staff said the amount of traffic there doesn’t warrant federal financial assistance or an upgrade.
Available money from the 2000 sales tax is shrinking as the city begins paying back bonds from the capital improvement projects people requested when the tax was approved 14 years ago.
The 2000 sales tax will be one source of money for the long-range capital improvement projects, but a second source of revenue will be necessary, staff said.
“This is a large list and large needs,” Stevens said.
Fire Chief Jake Rhoades requested two new fire stations, relocation of another, replacement of Fire Station No. 1 on Second Street, and the remodel of two others. The estimated cost is $26.3 million.
Rhoades said he thinks a new fire station, located on North Kelly, is needed in the next five years. Land for this station was purchased in 2007.
“This addition will allow for fire districts to be realigned and reduce the current travel time for both fire stations Nos. 3 and 5, which is well below the 90th percentile due to length of travel,” Rhoades said. “It is almost in no man’s land there.”
Many of the fire stations were built back in the 1970s and some do not meet Americans with Disabilities Act regulations.
A new golf and tennis clubhouse, renovation of the irrigation system and reconstruction of the greens at KickingBird Golf Course also were on the list with a price tag of $8.8 million.
“The golf course was built in 1971 with little improvements,” said Brian Soerensen, KickingBird head golf pro.
Soerensen estimated it would take about a year to reconstruct the greens. They would probably do nine holes at a time so they could continue to bring in some revenue, he said.
A second floor on the clubhouse was suggested, which could be used for meetings and weddings.
Completing Edmond 66 Park is a top priority of city staff. They want to add four more fields to the new complex that is expected to open this summer. The estimated cost is $5 million.
Staff would like to put another $10 million into renovating the ball fields at E.C. Hafer and J.L. Mitch parks.
“We are currently losing tournament bids to other metro/state/regional cities and Edmond youth leagues are losing players to surrounding locations due to a lack of quality fields,” said Craig Dishman, parks and recreation director.
A second library for Edmond was on the list. The estimated cost reached $9 million.
Edmond’s current library is the busiest in the library system and one of the busiest in the state.
“We would need the land. That is also another cost,” said Assistant City Manager Steve Commons. “Things are changing how we provide a library. We have looked north and west.”
Capital Projects and Financing Task Force will oversee a long-range plan and provide recommendations for financing.
“The biggie is the funding challenge,” Mayor Charles Lamb said. “This list is for long term. Some are ripe for action. We want to make sure the public is supportive.”
The capital projects task force’s next meeting is May 20 at 10 S Littler Ave.