Broken Arrow Projects Continue into 2011
By KELSY LORIN TAYLOR
Web Editor and Feature Writer
MAKING PLANS: Broken Arrow Stormwater Manager Jeff Bigby and Director of Engineering Kenny Schwab pause to describe upcoming projects for the community in the New Year.
KELSY LORIN TAYLOR for GTR Newspapers
Broken Arrow is one of the fastest growing cities in Oklahoma. With this growth, the infrastructure is utilized to capacity in many cases. Improvement projects are being planned throughout the city for the New Year.
One of the major projects will be the continuation of the Adams Creek Master Drainage Study. Located in eastern Broken Arrow, the creek has caused flooding for the area during heavy rains or thaw outs following snow and ice. “The last drainage study was completed in the late 1970s, and it is very important to update and address the issues there. This may be through increased sizes of bridges and culverts,” says Broken Arrow Stormwater Manager Jeff Bigby.
Another large project this year will be the widening of Aspen Avenue. Construction began this January, which will increase the current two lanes to five lanes. Broken Arrow Director of Engineering Kenny Schwab explains, “The range of the project is one mile and will span from New Orleans to Florence. Crossing intersections will also be improved during this project.”
Olive is also under construction and will be wrapped up this year. The two-mile stretch of improvements to the roadway is already noticeable and helping traffic flow much better in the area. “The third large road project to occur in 2011 will be along Elm Street from Kenosha to Houston,” Schwab adds.
Neighborhoods will also see a variety of projects in the coming months. “Country Aire Estates has brought many issues to our attention and we are excited to address them for the residents. Overlay will be set into place throughout the neighborhood and storm water projects are being planned,” says Bigby.
With such an important aspect of park areas in the community, projects will continue during the New Year to create even more enjoyment from them. Schwab notes, “A phased trail system is being designed at the moment and will provide a great resource for biking and jogging. Another exciting addition to the parks will be a disc golf course that is nearing design completion.”
A possible bond issue will bring much needed project funds to the City of Broken Arrow. The bond issue focuses on smaller projects that will have large impacts throughout the community. “Broken Arrow is still proactive and moving forward. Citizen comments have been outstanding and we hope to continue to bring improvements for many years to come through this bond,” adds Schwab.
Public safety projects within the bond would include the renovation of the public safety complex. Located there are the police, fire and emergency operations along with a communications center, classrooms and a physical resources area. In addition, fire station number three in the southeast portion of Broken Arrow would be completely replaced.
Under the quality of life section of the bond are projects that focus on upgrades of baseball, soccer and football fields. Outdoor tennis and basketball courts would also be improved for citizens to enjoy throughout the community.
An estimated $2.3 million would be allotted through the bond issue for storm water projects while $27 million would be applied to street construction. Taxes would not be increased and the total issue would not surpass $45 million.
For more information about past, current and future projects in the City of Broken Arrow, call 918-259-2400 or visit www.brokenarrowok.gov. For a full list of projects, visit www.gtrnews.com.