Simplified: Mayor Paul TenHaken has announced his biggest capital budget to date with plans to spend $931 million over the next five years. Here's a look at what's included.
Why it matters
- The new spending plan, released last week, shows a more than $100 million increase over the previous year's capital spending plan of $812 million. And, it's about $200 million more than the five-year plan TenHaken proposed in 2020.
- Roads have been one of TenHaken's top priorities in his term as mayor, and this latest spending plan reflects that with a proposed addition of $50 million over five years for highways and streets – a 20 percent increase from the last capital spending program.
- The 170-page spending plan also includes pool renovations, expanded trail systems and new buildings for both police and fire departments. It also puts a pause on expanding or adding city buildings for at least a year to allow time for construction costs to stabilize, TenHaken said in a letter to the City Council.
"This program is designed to ensure we continue to manage the city’s growth in a fiscally responsible manner through strategic investments," TenHaken said in a statement.
What's in the plan?
Well, with $931 million in spending, safe to say there's a lot. Here are some of the highlights:
Roads and bridges
Highways and streets account for nearly $346 million of the plan.
- Projects here include the new South Veterans Parkway, downtown street improvements and the replacement of the Sixth Street Bridge (among several others).
Parks and trails
Parks and Recreation have $46.1 million in projects included in TenHaken's proposal.
- One of the largest projects here is a plan to expand the bike trail from Lien Park to Great Bear as well as future improvements near Dawley Farm and in the Cherry Creek corridor.
- This also includes $400,000 in funding to renovate the Elmwood Golf Course clubhouse.
The spending plan includes funding to help with the master planning, renovation and replacement of local pools – though the plan notes renovation and replacement will primarily be funded through a quality of life bond.
Police and fire
For police, the plan includes money to buy the currently-leased Westside Report to Work Station
- It also includes just over $4.2 million to construct a 4,000 to 8,000-square-foot report to work station on the southeast side of town.
For fire, the plan budgets for $3.3 million to build Fire Station 13.
- There's also $500,000 slated to rebuild Fire Station 6 (the station at 41st and Marion).
Communication tools and other miscellaneous things
TenHaken's plan also sets aside nearly $400,000 for a new presentation and broadcast system in Carnegie Town Hall.
And, it calls for the replacement of two drones at a cost of $7,500 each.
Under equipment, the budget also allocates $600,000 in 2027 to purchase a new trolley.
What happens next?
TenHaken will present the capital spending plan, along with his proposed 2023 operating budget, to the City Council at 3 p.m. Thursday, July 21.
Then, it'll be up to the council to approve the budget and capital plan (or tweak as it sees fit).