Salisbury presents busy capital spending plan

Salisbury’s Capital Improvement Plan for 2019 to 2023, described as a “snapshot into the next five years’ existing and anticipated capital needs, and the funding needed to make them a reality,” was passed on first reading by the City Council last week.

The detailed document begins with an introduction by Mayor Jake Day.

“Take a look around our city and you will see the changes we envisioned over the last few years already taking shape: a state-of-the-art wastewater treatment plan, an emerging new Main Street and Riverwalk Park, a budding series of new exhibits at our zoo and major improvements to our City Park,” Day wrote.

“We are in the midst of building our future. And there is so much more to do. I know that your passion and mine is what has enabled our city to get a running start toward the next generation of beloved assets. That said, sound planning and expert fiscal management is what will enable us to build these projects without burdening our coffers, our taxpayers and future generations.”

“We will continue to replace important pieces of rolling stock, including police vehicles, fire trucks, dump trucks and more … our fine-tuned planning processes help us anticipate the most important investments to make that will cement our place as one of the great small cities in America, Day wrote.

The Capital Improvement Plan, or CIP, incorporates the Downtown Master Plan, Zoo Master Plan, City Park Master Plan, Urban Greenway, Route 13 Corridor Plan and improvements to bridges, streets and sidewalks.

The Main Street Master Plan was developed to “return vibrancy and vitality to Downtown and strengthen Downtown as a destination for investment and re-investment,” Day said.

Work includes utility upgrades, construction of a Broadband conduit and installation of a new traffic signal.

The Infrastructure and Development section, totaling $48 million, includes $2.8 million for the Bicycle Master Plan, which involves building new lanes and multi-use paths throughout the city. The total plan implementation was $4.25 million.

The CIP includes $1.4 million for City Park Master Plan, a project that includes more than $5 million of upgrades phased in over several years. Future phases include improved lighting, security cameras, landscaping, new trails, restrooms adjacent to tennis courts, new parking lots and a ramp for the disabled from where they park to the bandstand.

There’s $4.8 million for the Urban Greenway Master Plan, to provide a continuous, east-west route for walkers and biker though the city. The goal is to eventually link Pemberton Park with Schumaker Pond Park. There will be 11 phases that total $15.2 million.

The city will apply for grants from the Community Parks and Playgrounds Program, including $132,000 for the final 3,000 square feet of skating surface.

There is $4 million for citywide street reconstruction.

Streetscaping is included each fiscal year for lighting, bike routes, landscaping and signage.

Anticipated expenditures in the General Fund total $47.7 million. Of this amount, $26 million would be funded from the sale of general obligation bonds. A total of $8.4 million is proposed to be funded through the General Fund Revenues, $7.5 million through lease-purchase and about $6 million through grants, donations and in-kind services.

According to Police Department portion of the CIP, there are 37 marked cars, with 16 assigned to take home, with many in fair to poor condition.

The police department is asking for 12 new, four-wheel drive SUVs, to allow room for officers and equipment, and wants six to be caged at a cost of $690,000.

Last year, the police department requested 12 vehicles and were awarded eight.

The police department also requested $40,000 for lead mining at the firing range, last excavated in 2008.

Listed for the fire department is $6.9 million, including $975,000 to replace Tanker 1, $875,000 to replace EMS units, $1.2 million for a new fire station on the east end and $1.8 million to replace trucks 1 and 2.

The fire department, which provides fire and emergency services to 57,000 people over 90 square miles, wants a new public safety building constructed on the north end of the city

The fire department is asking for a replacement truck, costing $975,000, to replace its 2001 American LaFrance Metropolitan, and a new tanker truck. The volunteer organization of the department will contribute to the cost.

There’s $1.2 million for the Salisbury Zoo, for projects including the jaguar and bobcat exhibits at a cost of $1 million, and $165,000 for Poplar Hill Mansion painting, grounds restoration and other work.

Funding for Water Works totals $17 million and includes $3.3 million for the filter replacement project, $3.3 million for automated meter infrastructure, $2 million for sewer infiltration and inflow remediation and $2.8 million for pump station improvements.


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