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Part Three of Seven: Construction and Roadway Maintenance Projects
As the City of Coppell moves into the future, City staff recognizes the need to be proactive and strategic when it comes to budget planning. Coppell is reaching a state of build-out, and the City's population is not expected to increase exponentially in the coming years. However, the City's population has continued to grow in recent years, and Coppell saw a 3% increase in the number of residents from 2014 to 2018. In order to accommodate this growth and continue to offer the high-level of service that residents expect, the City strategically invests significant funds into projects and initiatives that benefit the whole community.
Further, the City of Coppell is transitioning into a sustainment stage. As infrastructure ages, the City must take steps to proactively maintain its assets and improve upon the high standard of living in Coppell. The City has begun to place an increased priority on maintenance and redevelopment. From roadways to sidewalks to streetscapes, City crews are working continuously to maintain public assets to ensure that they continue to be viable into the future.
"Our future is wholly dependent on our ability to serve the public," said Mike Land, City Manager. "The City's dedicated municipal workforce recognizes that the 'person in the house' is our only reason for existing, and we strive to demonstrate that through our actions and behaviors. The level of service is great today, but our goal is to make it even better tomorrow. Our continued efforts to maintain and improve our overall service delivery and maintenance efforts will enhance Coppell's desirability as a community of choice for existing and potential residents, businesses and visitors."
Budget Planning Process
The City of Coppell uses a rolling five-year planning document to prioritize projects and major expenditures. This document is updated annually, and it serves as a guideline for the upcoming fiscal year budgets. Every project that the City prioritizes has a direct and measurable benefit to the community. Over the past three years, the City has used this document to plan for various projects and services that are funded through the General Fund, various Special Revenue Funds and grants, when available. These projects and services include:
Construction and Roadway Maintenance Projects
The City has a strategic goal to provide excellent and well-maintained city infrastructure and facilities. One element of achieving that goal is to implement roadway improvement and maintenance projects. From 2014-2018, the City of Coppell completed several public construction projects that helped to increase accessibility around the city and make commuting a little easier for drivers. In this timeframe, the City completed Freeport Parkway between Sandy Lake and SH 121, which was the last new roadway connection in its plans. This connection provided a much-needed capacity and link for residents. Coppell also implemented capacity enhancements at the intersection of Sandy Lake and Denton Tap to improve the capacity of both of these major arterials. These improvements were followed by signal timing improvements to support the infrastructure changes. Capacity enhancements are planned at other intersection in the future.
The City of Coppell has also implemented interim improvements to a few roadways in its commercial sectors. In the spring of this year, the City partnered with Dallas County on an asphalt overlay project for portions of South Belt Line Road, Airline Drive, and South Royal Lane. This project offered a temporary solution that allows for a smooth ride for drivers. The asphalt overlay will be removed in the coming years, once construction on Freeport Parkway is completed and concrete reconstruction begins on South Beltline and Royal Lane. The County will maintain the asphalt pavement until these roads are reconstructed.
Construction on Freeport Parkway began in late spring of 2018, and the City is working to reconstruct the deteriorated concrete along the roadway from IH-653 to Bethel Road. The project also includes reconstructing the bridge over Grapevine Creek and lengthening the curve in the road between Airline and Fritz. Utility improvements are also included in the project. In the long term, this project will benefit not only commuters, but numerous business parks on Coppell's west side.
The City has identified numerous improvement projects that will begin in the near future, including the reconstruction of Parkway Boulevard. The project consists of removal and replacement of pavement, water, and sewer lines from Heartz Road to Lodge Road. The project is planned to include an 8-foot trail on the north side of the road from Heartz Road to Moore Road and a 6-foot sidewalk along the south side of the roadway. These additions will increase the options for biking and walking in the city, and they will encourage residents to participate in outdoor activities.
In order to improve the quality of access for Coppell homeowners, some of Coppell's neighborhood alleys are also being reconstructed and repaired. These alleyways were chosen based on the results of a pavement study combined with staff observations, and crews recently started work. The project is expected to be completed by the summer of 2019. One challenge with alley reconstruction is maintaining access to rear garages and driveways during construction. Staff works directly with homeowners to minimize the disruption, increase the contractor's efficiency, and ultimately complete the projects quicker.
Further, the City is actively working to update infrastructure to ensure that is complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act so that all Coppell residents and visitors can enjoy everything the City has to offer. The City has completed an ADA Transition Plan and is actively working to implement that plan through a combination of standalone projects and as components of larger projects, such as Freeport Parkway Reconstruction.
"Our goal for each improvement project is to meet or exceed the expectations of our residents, while striving to meet the broader goal of providing excellent and well-maintained roadways, sidewalks, alleys and public spaces," said Kent Collins, Director of Public Works. "We want to make sure that everyone in Coppell can get around the City safely and efficiently."
About the City of Coppell Budget:
The City of Coppell continues to see positive economic indicators in all areas of finance, including the recently reaffirmed AAA bond rating, growth in the tax base and surging sales tax receipts primarily due to thriving distribution centers and business parks. Expenditures, revenues, and reserves have been managed efficiently and proactively for many years, resulting in appropriate fund balances and a strong financial position.
"The City of Coppell is in a great financial position," said Mayor Karen Hunt. "City staff continue to do a fantastic job managing our public monies. We are very fortunate to live, work, and play in a city that places a high value on community and quality of life while focusing on maintaining what we have built."
The City of Coppell works diligently to be fiscally responsible and transparent, and the City continuously receives accolades from outside agencies regarding its financial planning and prudent budgeting practices. The City strongly encourages residents to get involved, attend public meetings and provide feedback on the proposed budget.
For more information about the FY2018-2019 budget, contact the Finance Department at 972-304-3691 or visit coppelltx.gov/budget.