What would be in a 2018 bond?

Concept art of a two-way Liberty Street.

What would be in a 2018 bond?
December 28
05:00 2017

More two-way streets downtown? A second phase for Quarry Park? Millions for workforce housing? Those are just some of the possibilities for a potential 2018 bond.

The Winston-Salem City Council appointed a Citizens’ Capital Needs Committee in September to review the city’s $630 million worth of capital needs for a potential bond referendum next year.  The committee narrowed it down to a  $120.3 million bond package that would result in a 4 cent tax increase.

The next step will be a workshop held on Monday, Jan. 29, at 5:30 p.m. at City Hall in which the council will examine the recommendations. If the council decides to move forward with a bond, it could be placed on the November ballot for voter approval.

The last referendum was in 2014 when voters approved $139.2 million in general obligation bonds, which included new police district offices and transforming a former quarry into a new park. Most of those bond projects have been completed, but a few like Happy Hill Park renovations, have yet to break ground.

Mayor Allen Joines said doing regular bonds is necessary to keep up with a city’s capital needs. He said the committee did a good job finding needed upkeep projects.

“I think they acknowledge that you have to take care of your existing facilities before you build new ones,” said Joines.

The committee ranked projects on things like reducing service costs, urgency of need, how it’d improve service and how it enhances the economic, social or natural environment. Some projects, like repairing the fountains at Corpening Plaza, weren’t part of the recommendations.   However, many projects did make the cut. The City Council, with input from the community, may decide to change, add or subtract from the committee’s recommendations.

Here’s the recommendations, organized by category, with the approximate value of the projects:

Economic Development ($12 million)

• $10 million to help develop or redevelop commercial and industrial park sites.

•$2 million for the Revitalizing Urban Commercial  Areas (RUCA) program to help rehabilitate commercial properties in distressed areas.

Housing Development ($9.7 million)

•9.7 million to revitalize neighborhoods with a focus on housing rehabilitation and multi-family units that’ll provide workforce housing.

Streets and sidewalks ($56 million)

• $4 million to convert downtown Liberty and Main streets to 2-way streets after Business 40 renovations are done and the highway reopens in 2020.

• $3 million to convert First and Second streets to 2-way streets, also after Business 40 reopens.

• $3.8 million for Business 40 improvements, including a clear noise wall on the east side of Peters Creek Parkway, artwork on seven bridges, pedestrian lighting and landscape enhancements. This would be in addition to the $9 million for other enhancements that’s already been committed by the city and the Creative Corridors Coalition.

• $2.3 million for a Multi‐Use Path in the Business 40 corridor from Lockland Avenue to Liberty Street for pedestrians and cyclists.

• $6 million for Polo Road Improvements that’ll  allow  for safe pedestrian crossings, more accommodation for cyclists and safer u-turns.

• $2.6 million for visual improvements to downtown streetscapes.

• $778,000 to create a reserve for future greenway development.

• $27.1 million for street resurfacing.

• $6.2 million for concrete base streets rehabilitation.

Parks and Recreation ($24.3 million)

• $3 million for a second phase for Quarry Park’s development, which may include a scenic loop trail, signage and expanded infrastructure.

• $5.4 million for a second phase for Winston Lake Park’s development, including trails, restrooms, lake front improvements and golf course parking improvements.

• $3.8 million for a second phase for Salem Lake Park’s development, including trails, restrooms and shelter conversion.

• $7.2 million for recreation and parks facility

renewal, which includes things like landscaping, lighting, security cameras, tennis courts, indoor basketball courts, swimming pools and general facility needs at recreation centers.

• $1.9 million for playground renovations.

• $1 million for renovations on the Strollway.

• $2 million for park land acquisition and development for a future park.

Public Safety ($18.5 million)

• $10 million to replace the aging public safety radio communications system.

• $5 million for a new fire station to fill a gap in the fire department’s coverage network in the  Burke Mill Road area.

• $3.5 million for land acquisition and master planning for a Public Safety Training Complex. Future phases would cost approximately $14 million.

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Todd Luck

Todd Luck

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