YOUR TAX DOLLARS AT WORK!
•MAGOFFIN POCKET PARK
•NORTHEAST REGIONAL SKATEPARK
•SUN METRO INTRODUCTES 22 NEW BUSES
•PAINT YOUR VERSION OF LOS LAGARTOS SCULPTURE
•COMMUNITY INPUT ON SIGNATURE BOND PROJECTS
Your Tax Dollars at Work is a comprehensive outreach effort to share information on the $1 billion dollar investment made by the City of El Paso.
This investment is improving our community through the quality of life projects, public art, street infrastructure improvements and the overall creation of an effective mass transit structure that will encourage all members of the community to use the system.
Magoffin Pocket Park
The Magoffin Pocket Park, located at 1030 Myrtle Ave., will be among the first projects funded by the 2012 Quality of Life Bonds to becompleted. This park will marry seamlessly into the neighborhood located in central El Paso, because the park’s design meets the Magoffin Historic District Design Guidelines. It’s also one of several “pocket parks” being built as part of the bond program.
The name “pocket park” denotes the small size of the park, but do not let its size fool you. The park will be a green, urban oasis, which will offer great value to the area with many amenities including a gazebo withbenches, a colorful integrated concrete sidewalk with old fashioned style street lamps, a play area enclosed with decorative wrought iron fencing, and new landscaping throughout, including sod, trees and plant shrubs.
The cost of the park is relatively small, as well. The total budget for the project was only $300,000. Less than one percent of the $473 million in quality of life improvements approved by voters in November 2012.
Though they’re small in size and in cost, pocket park projects promise to give neighborhoods around the city an injection of open space and activity.
Northeast Regional Skatepark
The first project funded by the 2012 Quality of Life Bond is nearing completion, and El Paso’s skating community couldn’t be more excited.
“This skatepark will truly be one of a kind for the El Paso region, and it will allow even the most advanced skater to take their skills to the next level,” said Paul Zimmerman, President of the El Paso Skatepark Association.
This world-class skatepark facility will give skaters 25,000 square feet of space to skate. It will include specialty concrete work to be completed by the California Skateparks, which has created courses for the X-Games, and is a world-wide leader in skatepark construction.
Using public input from local skaters the Site Design Group was able to design a topnotch layout. It’s main focal point a 16-foot tall Etnies Capsulewasinspired by the famous Etnies Skatepark in California, according Zimmerman.(Z-Man).
The parks other features, such as its Flow Bowl and Snake Run, will allow amateurs to learn how to skate and carve a route through the park. Its plaza layout will cater to skaters who prefer to skate in a street style fashion.
The Northeast Skatepark will also be receiving improvements to its adjacent parking lot, landscaping, and irrigation system. The total cost for the project will be $1.4 million.
SUN METRO INTRODUCES 22 NEW BUSES
The smell of a new vehicle can be intoxicating. For many people the smell evokes a sense of happiness.
For Sun Metro, the sensation of happiness created by the new vehicle smell is magnified thanks to the arrival of 22 new 2014 New Flyer Xcelsior model buses.
These 40-foot vehicles have joined Sun Metro’s regular route service over the last several weeks. The buses have been seen all over town on Routes 3, 7, 15, 18, 55, 59, 63 and 65, just to name a few.
The new buses were purchased using a Federal Transit Administration (FTA) grant and local funds. Each bus cost approximately $525,000. Buses funded by the FTA are required to be in service for 12 years and/or 500,000 miles (whichever comes first) before they are eligible for replacement.
The 2014 New Flyer is a low-floor vehicle that makes it easier for passengers to step onto the bus without having to take a large step up off the sidewalk. Other bus details include:
A wider front door with a 32” wide ramp that has a gentle,1:7 slope ratio and an increased space entryway
Full Electric HVAC cooling/heating system
Four (4) Wheel Disc Brakes which provide a smoother, more efficient braking system
10 percent better fuel economy
38 passenger seats; up to 57 with standees
LED interior lighting
An aerodynamic body
Like all Sun Metro buses, the new vehicles are fueled by compressed natural gas, and have room for two wheelchairs and two exterior bicycle racks.
OPTIONS FOR MOBILITY DEVICES
Another new addition is the rear-facing wheelchair-securement option. This is a new option for passengers using mobility devices.
The new securement option—a first for Sun Metro—will allow for faster boarding by passengers using mobility devices without compromising the safety of the passengers. Riders using mobility devices will still have the option to use the standard forward-facing wheelchair-securement option.
RETIRING THE OLDER MODELS
The 22 new buses will replace the 1991-model buses that will be retired from Sun Metro service. The majority of 1991-model buses, which have been driven over one million miles, will be stripped of all electronics and other usable material and auctioned off for scrap. Sun Metro will keep a few 1991-model buses for a contingency fleet and training purposes.
For more information about Sun Metro, visit sunmetro.net or call (915)533-3333. Like us on Facebook at facebook.com/sunmetro or follow us on Twitter @SunMetro.
Investing in our roadways
The City of El Paso is more than doubling its spending on resurfacing streets in 2014to give roads new life.
This year, the resurfacing budget is $7.7 million. Funding for resurfacing streets in previous two years was approximately $3 million.
Funding to upgrade roadways and strengthen the transportation networkwas made possible by a City Council vote in May 2012 ratifying an ambitious $210 million Street Infrastructure Capital Plan. The plan to be completed over multiple years established a consistent financing mechanism to deliver critical transportation network infrastructure improvements, such as reconstructing streets, filling in sidewalk gaps and resurfacing roads.
“Investing in our transportation network infrastructure creates a more livable community,” Department of Transportation Director Ted Marquez said. “This capital improvement plan will provide smoother riding surfaces and safer roads by breathing new life into existing streets through resurfacing and reconstruction projects.”
Street resurfacing is the process of extending a roads life span by providing it with a new asphalt surface. Asphalt material is stripped from an existing street and the material removed is combined with new asphalt. The mixture is then applied to the surface of the street. The process delivers a street with a surface that is so smooth it resembles a brand new street.
Resurfacing projects often include street repairs or upgrades to curbs, sidewalks and other transportation elements in an effort to improve the
community’s multi-modal transportation network. For example: structurally failed curbs and sidewalks may be repaired, minor geometric changes to assist storm water runoff may be performed, and pedestrian paths of travel may be updated to meet current ADA (America with Disabilities Act) standards.
Street selection process
The number of streets resurfaced annually is based on funding allocated to the resurfacing program. Funding levels are determined during the City’s budget process. A total of 74 streets will be resurfaced in 2014, compared to 32 in 2013.
Streets are selected for resurfacing based on their condition. When evaluating streets for resurfacing each street is divided into segments, usually from intersection to intersection. Each road segment in the city has a PCI (Pavement Condition Index) score associated with it. These scores are generated by using a program called Micro Paver which was developed by the Army corps of Engineers for managing pavements. The program uses information gathered about the street such as: quantity and type of cracks, patches, potholes, utility cuts and weathering of the surface to calculate the PCI value.
Streets are then ranked according to this value and logical limits of construction are proposed. Typically streets with the lowest scores are scheduled for resurfacing first, however it is possible for a street to have structural issues that require work beyond the scope of the resurfacing program. These streets are submitted to the Capital Improvement Program. These streets are submitted to the Capital Improvement Program. Only the section of a street that meets the resurfacing selection criteria is resurfaced. The rest of the roadway is maintained through normal maintenance activities, such as pothole patching.
EPDoT coordinates resurfacing activities with utility companies to avoid having the roadway torn up for utility work after it has been freshly resurfaced. The paving season typically runs from March to November because the temperature of the ground where the new asphalt is applied is critical to effectiveness of the new roadway surface. Warmer street surfaces generally produce a better product.
The amount of time that it takes to resurface a roadway will vary depending on the weather and the extent of the resurfacing process required. These processes may include:
Concrete work: The replacement and/or installation of curb and gutters, driveways, sidewalks and handicap ramps, alley aprons, aprons around water valves, monuments and manholes;
Subgrade/base repairs: The removal and replacement of unstable base course and subgrade (the foundation beneath the asphalt surface);
Milling: Removal of existing asphalt pavement;
Recycling: Elimination of weathered, cracked and unevenness of existing asphalt pavement through scarification, rejuvenation, and compaction
Paving: Laying new asphalt surface on street;
Striping/Pavement Markings: Installation of road markings, such as centerline, stop bars and lane markings, if required after paving of street.
CHIHUAHUAS JOIN EAT WELL! EL PASO
CHILDREN`S FOOD MENU WILL INCLUDE HEALTHIER OPTIONS
Taking the kids out to the ballgame may still include the traditional ballpark fare, but the El Paso Chihuahuas are showing their commitment to children’s health by becoming part of the Eat Well! El Paso initiative. Today, the City of El Paso Department of Public Health, which coordinates the project, announced that the latest participant in Eat Well! is Ovations Food Services-the concessionaire at Southwest University Park. The group has worked closely with an Eat Well! El Paso Registered Dietician and has developed various meal options for children who attend the games.
“We are very excited to have Ovations and the Chihuahuas on board with this program and it is awesome to know that when the little ones’ tummies start to ‘growl’ there will be healthy options on the menu,” said Joy Leos, Project Coordinator.
Ballpark concession stands will feature two great catches as healthier meal options. The first is a tasty Southwest Chicken lettuce wrap, fruit, and 1% milk or water. The second option is a delicious Hot Dog made with an all-beef frank, carrots/celery, ranch dip, and 1% milk or water.
ESD is gearing up for its annual block party-style Earth Day Celebration on April 5 at the Municipal Service Center. The event is part of the City’s Earth Month festivities.
CALL TO ARTISTS & CULTURAL FUNDING INFO
•2014 ARTWORK PURCHASE PROGRAM
•ART WINDOWS 2015-2016
•CULTURAL FUNDING SESSIONS
2014 Artwork Purchase Program - CALL TO LOCAL ARTISTS
The Museums & Cultural Affairs Department is building a public collection of artwork created by El Paso Area artists that recognizes the artistic talent and cultural diversity in El Paso, Texas. The artwork is placed in City buildings for the benefit and enjoyment of the general public.
The artwork will become part of the City of El Paso Art Collection and will be installed at the following new City buildings:
El Paso City Hall, located at 300 N. Campbell,
Mulligan Building, located at 218 N. Campbell,
Texas Building, located at 801 Texas Ave.
Applications must be submitted using the Call for Entry (CAFÉ) online application system at www.callforentry.org
. Click on “Apply to Calls” and click on “City of El Paso, 2014 Artwork Purchase Program.” All entries must be submitted before the deadline of May 1, 2014, 5:00 p.m. (MST).
Art Windows 2015-2016 - CALL TO ARTISTS
The City of El Paso seeks to establish a pool of artists or artist teams from the Greater El Paso area for consideration in upcoming exhibits for the Art Windows of El Paso at El Paso International Airport. All interested artists must be an independent artist or artist team 18 years of age or older and reside in the Greater El Paso area which includes Las Cruces, New Mexico, and Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico.
Art Windows provides an exhibit space for 5-10 pieces of work between two display cases for a three-month period. The designated space is intended to showcase El Paso as an international cultural destination through high quality art and visual experiences.
Applications must be submitted using the Call for Entry (CAFÉ) online application system at www.callforentry.org
. Click on “Apply to Calls” and click on “City of El Paso ART WINDOWS 2015-2016.” All entries must be submitted before the deadline of August 1, 2014, 5:00 p.m. (MST).
Mandatory Attendance for Everyone Applying for Grants
PARKS AND RECREATION EVENTS
Easter Egg Hunts
Lifeguard Courses Tax Preparation
Arbor Day Art in the Park
Midnight Basketball Senior Games
After School Program
GENERAL SERVICES EXCELLENCE AWARD
Joel McKnight (left) and Steven Lunsford (right)
The City of El Paso General Services Department
received the Administrative Excellence Award from the Texas Recreation and Park Society (TRAPS).
DEPARTMENT OPENS DOORS TO COMMUNITY
OPEN HOUSE CELEBRATES 6 YEARS OF EXISTENCE AS CITY DEPARTMENT
After weeks of preparation and planning, the Department of Public Health opened its doors on February 18th for an open house, celebrating six years as a Department under the City of El Paso. Display booths featuring department programs were set up along the administration building’s main hallways, offering information ranging from breastfeeding and 2-1-1 information, to diseased pig lungs showing the effects of smoking, and a microscope showing samples of the diseases identified by laboratory staff.
Click here for more information!
CDC PARTNERS WITH CITY`S HEALTH LAB
The City of El Paso Public Health Laboratory has been selected to assist the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in procuring blood samples which test positive for Syphilis.
Specimens selected for the project include those which test positive for any of the several stages of the progression of Syphilis disease. The purpose of the cooperative arrangement is to support the development and improvement of diagnostic tests for Syphilis.
NEIGHBORHOOD LEADERSHIP ACADEMY
EL PASO LIVE! EVENTS
Find out about upcoming events by clicking on each picture!
Newsletter produced by the City Communications & Public Affairs Office.
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