By Philip Haldiman, Independent Newsmedia
This year’s draft capital improvement budget includes funds for new parks, a public safety facility, water treatment plants improvements and a number of street projects.
Peoria proposed a $211 million capital budget for fiscal year 2018 with a 10-year capital improvement program of $659 million, a $189 million increase since 2012, and a $71 million increase from last fiscal year.
City Manager Carl Swenson said the CIP budget funds new infrastructure for a growing city. This budget includes funds for the expansion of the Pinnacle Peak Public Safety Facility and the Pyramid Peak Water Treatment Plant, as well as intersection improvements at 75th Avenue and Cactus Road/Peoria Avenue, Northern Community Park and a new neighborhood park in The Meadows development.
He said new projects and amenities are needed to serve a growing population and maintain service levels.
This has become more challenging as funding sources that were traditionally used to offset these costs are no longer available or have been significantly restricted, Mr. Swenson said.
“We don’t have all the funds we would like. We’ve been trying to catch up since the economy collapsed in 2008, but growth is occurring again. We are fortunate to have come out of a serious recession, but we have a lag in facilities up north, particularly recreation facilities,” Mr. Swenson said. “And Prop 400 didn’t pass. That would have helped in catching up, but we are doing our best. And I’m proud in what we have done to re-prioritize within the Capital Improvement Budget to force dollars where we need them.”
The budget includes four new projects, nine projects in design and seven projects under construction.
Development and Engineering Director Andy Granger said the good news is that the city partnered with Maricopa County Department of Transportation to fund $3 million for improvements to Pinnacle Peak Road between 91st and 99th avenues, as well as $2.6 million to fund Happy Valley Parkway between the Agua Fria River and Loop 303. The city received $14 million in outside funding for capital projects, Mr. Granger said.
“McDot for the first time, they have agreed to fund specific projects that we will annex into the city once they are complete,” he said.
Mr. Granger said the bad news is that Proposition 400 failed at the ballot box last year, which would have funded amenities such as open space, recreation and other quality of life enhancements for about $146 million, through a 0.4 percent sales tax increase, equaling two cents on a $5 purchase.
But he said accomplishments included $11.6 million in improvements to the Pinnacle Peak Public Safety Facility expansion to serve northern Peoria, to be completed this summer, as well as $712,000 in improvements to the west side of Lake Pleasant Parkway, completed in December, and $803,000 in improvements to 79th Avenue and Thunderbird Road, a project that came in $310,000 under budget.
Deer Valley Road and 87th Avenue traffic signal: Acquire right of way, install new traffic signal. Construction not yet scheduled. The budget is $627,000.
Jomax Road, Loop 303 to Vistancia Boulevard: New roadway will connect to future Jomax traffic interchange. Construction is expected in fiscal year 2020. The budget is $833,000 for fiscal year 2018 and total budget is $3.8 million.
Peoria homes alley improvements: Repave existing five alleys between 75th Avenue and 73rd Drive and Desert Cove and Becker Lane, and install ribbon curb on both sides. Construction is not scheduled yet. The budget is $591,000.
Pinnacle Peak Road and 91st Avenue to Lake Pleasant Parkway: Widen roadway for bike lanes, near The Meadows development. The developer of The Meadows will pay for the south half from 99th to 91st avenues and Maricopa County will pay for the north half from 99th to 91st avenues. The project includes signal upgrades at 91st Avenue. The city will annex the roadway after construction. Construction will be concurrent with The Meadows. The budget is $3.6 million, but the county will pay $3 million.
Source: City of Peoria