Q&A: Downtown drainage project to be coordinated with Tower Green

February 27, 2018

If the Tower Green project is approved (in the March 6 G.O. Bond election), will the City still do the drainage improvements planned for that portion of Silas Street?

The storm sewer project is part of the voter approved 2013 1/2-cent Sales Tax extension. The project was originally slated for the 2020-21 Fiscal Year time frame. However, during the 2017-18 budget process last June, the City Council elected to switch the timing of the project with the Hillcrest Drive Reconstruction project. So the Hillcrest project will now be funded in 2020-21, and the downtown drainage project will be funded during the current (2017-18) fiscal year.

In fact, a consultant has already been selected to design the drainage project, and a contract should go before the City Council for approval on March 5. The design phase will likely wrap up toward the end of this year.

According to Director of Engineering Micah Siemers, design of the drainage project will be coordinated with the Tower Green project, assuming citizens approve the Parks and Recreation package as proposed.

It should be noted that on its own, the drainage project would not require demolition of the entire stretch of Silas between Dewey and Osage. But there would be a portion of Silas that would have to be “open cut” to facilitate the work. The final design has not been completed yet, so it is difficult to say exactly what the impact would be as there may be some additional work required on other segments of storm sewer along Silas. However, the portion of storm sewer known to require replacement will require cutting at least a 20-foot-wide strip crossing Silas from north to south to facilitate the drainage improvements.

The bottom line is, if the Parks & Recreation proposal is approved by voters on March 6, work on the planned downtown drainage project will be coordinated with the Tower Green project so that both projects can be constructed as efficiently as possible with minimal disruption to motorists.

Green waste project costly endeavor

With spring getting closer I’ve gotten pretty jealous of Tulsa’s green waste and free mulch site. What can I or others be doing to encourage our city to adopt something similar?

The City has looked into implementing a service such as this but has found the cost to purchase the industrial-type machinery required to do the mulching extremely prohibitive. Additionally, the City would be required to regulate the service as a landfill, rendering it even more expensive to implement and operate.

According to some City directors, several individuals have expressed an interest in providing this type of service in Bartlesville but have found the start-up/investment costs prohibitive as well, at least in comparison to the projected revenue generation.

As with most initiatives, what would be needed for the City of Bartlesville to implement this type of program is funding.

K-Mart (again)

I’ve heard there is something going in at K-Mart. Is that true?

There have been no permit applications filed with the Community Development Department regarding the former K-Mart location and no other information known that indicate changes are planned.