Yesterday was a marathon session of the city council. We started with committee meetings at 10:00. Then went to the afternoon session at 12:30 and talked about how Parks and Recreation functions and their cost recovery philosophy. This is a precursor for our discussion about a Mega Center vs. a Senior Center. I feel this will be the bone of contention about the Senior Center. Mr. Randolph feels that he will never recover the Operating and Maintenance costs (O & M) from a Senior Center, and that a Mega Center will have a broader base for membership fees. This discussion will continue over time and it is up to the citizens to write their Council Representative and let them know what they would like put on the ballot for the May election.
The next item that was discussed was the new building that will be replacing the current library property. I have my concerns about this building but I am very supportive of the project. This building will start the renovation of downtown Arlington. The building will have retail, office, residential and will incorporate parking for the library and city hall. It will be designed and operate like the one in downtown Addison. Addison’s model has been operating for the last 20 years, and been a success over time. The developer is ready to go and it should be complete in the next three years. The project will be called City Center. This project is a public/private partnership. The public aspect is one that will designate the land for this project and lease the parking component for the city’s use. The private part will be the 29 million dollars required complete the project. There is already interest in business’ who want to lease space in this building.
The last point of interest in the afternoon session was the fact that I was able to move up the repaving of Avenue H one year in the bond package. So Greater Southwest will be repaved in 2015, Avenue H in 2019 and Avenue E in 2020. I think that this schedule will fit nicely with the 360 and I30 exchange that is being planned.