Sand Springs plans new public works facility in Prattville
BY SUSAN HYLTON World Staff Writer
Monday, October 22, 2012
10/22/12 at 7:59 AM
SAND SPRINGS - An overgrown strip ditch and illegal dumping ground in the Prattville community is planned as the future site of a public works facility and park.
"That is the best location, we feel, for it because the city owns the property already. It's just a good fit," said City Manager Rocky Rogers.
Residents have expressed concerns about noise and its proximity to neighborhoods, but the city is promising to be a good neighbor.
"It's our goal to help mitigate as much of that as possible if not all of it. We hold ourselves to the same standard we hold any developer," Rogers said.
It is hoped that development of the 46-acre site west of 129th West Avenue near the dead end of 46th Street will cure some of the problems that already exist.
"Our Fire Department has had to respond to fires out there. It's just a place where people get into mischief. We believe this will help improve that," Rogers said.
The city is opting to build after leasing spaces for its public works divisions for years. Rogers said the majority of their leased buildings are substandard and in need of repair.
The new facility will house all street, water, solid waste, engineering and administrative officers. Trash trucks will be parked at the site as well.
The Pratt Family Trust donated the property to the city for a park originally.
"The city hung on to it for decades and has not had the funding or ability to make that happen," Rogers said.
Rogers said the trust liked the city's concept for a park with trails and public works facility on the site.
Construction of the facility will be funded by revenue bonds backed by wastewater and water revenues and a one-penny sales tax dedicated to capital projects, Rogers said. The engineer's estimate for the facility is $6.5 million.
Officials hope the facility will be complete within the next year to 18 months.
Unlike the public works facility, funding for the park will require voter approval. It could receive funding if Vision2 passes in November. Rogers said officials are also considering a general obligation bond issue next year.
The Board of Adjustment unanimously approved a special exception for the project in an agriculture district in August. Nearby residents expressed concerns about truck traffic, noise and water runoff.
Public Works Director Derek Campbell said that four trash trucks would leave from the site in the morning and return in the afternoon, that there would be no sewer treatment at the site and that a vegetative screening is built into the plans.
A public meeting to discuss the city's plans at the site was held earlier this month and drew opposition from nearby residents.
Rogers said they will invite the public to another meeting in the future once the master plan is complete.
Jeanie Kvach, whose property abuts the property, supports the city's plans because it would get the city's maintenance buildings off Oklahoma 97.
"Highway 97 is our front door, and it needs to be as nice as we can make it," she said.
Kvach said the public works facility will not even be seen from the road. Rogers said it would be about 1,000 feet from the street.
"It's on the fringes of a neighborhood. They're doing it in a way that it will be a nice facility," Kvach said.
Kvach said she supports the park as long as the city has a strong presence there which would hopefully alleviate some of the vandalism, trespassing and theft problems in the area.
Kvach said she has called police numerous times in connection with people hunting without permission, and young people starting fires and vandalizing property.
Kvach and her husband, David Kvach, bought 180 acres from the Pratt trust, 40 of which were developed for the first phase of Spring Mountain Estates near 41st Street and 137th West Ave.
Berl Padgett, a resident of Spring Lake Mountain Estates, said that he thinks the city should have notified more residents about the project than just those they are legally required to notify, which is those living within 300 feet of the property line.
He also has concerns about an increase in driving across property lines if a park is added.
Original Print Headline: Sand Springs plans new public works facility
Susan Hylton 918-581-8381