Council eyes five-year capital improvement program update

MARTINEZ, Calif. – Martinez City Council is looking ahead to the next five years, determining what capital improvements will be included in the current and future budget adoptions.

During Wednesday’s budget workshop, Interim City Engineer Randy Leptien shared a five-year list of projects, of which the first two are funded in the 2019-21 budget that needs to be adopted and in place by July 1.

Funding for many of these projects comes from sources other than the General Fund, City Manager Eric Figueroa said.

Liptien divided the projects into recurring and routine as well as the non-recurring types.

Among the recurring jobs to be undertaken under the 2019-21 budget is the annual storm drain and creek channel maintenance, a $100,000 expense for which Martinez uses National Pollutant Elimination Discharge system funds.

The work consists of replacing old and deteriorated storm drains and maintaining the city’s creeks.

Martinez usually spends $25,000 in California Gas Tax funds on curb ramps. It sets aside additional gas tax money – $114,000 in the upcoming budget – to help property owners repair their sidewalks. In addition, residents may take up the city’s offer to remove and dispose of damaged sidewalks while the landowner pays for the new sidewalk segment.

Since the city has $114,000 in gas tax revenue in its covers, no new funds are required, Liptien said.

The annual pavement management project uses the voter-approved Measure D half-sent sales tax revenues to repair roads and streets throughout the city, and $4.4 million has been allocated for projects to be done in 2019-21.

Under new federal laws, Martinez must inventory and develop a sign replacement program for safety reasons, and the budget spends $50,000 annually to remain in compliance.

Non-recurring projects to be underwritten in 2019-21 include on-call paving and repairs. Estimated cost is $3 million, to be funded by Measure J and Measure D revenues plus Martinez’s share of state gasoline tax money.

Improvements are slated for the Pacheco Boulevard and Arnold Drive intersection, including the addition of a traffic signal and some widening. While Measure C and J revenues are earmarked for this, Martinez and Contra Costa County staff members are seeking additional revenue sources for the work.

Several sites will see sidewalk gaps closed. That will be underwritten by Senate Bill 1 gas tax money and Measure J revenues. Among the sites are Arnold Drive west of Milano Way and west of Fig Tree; Morello Hills Drive near Morello Avenue and Arnold Drive, and Marina Vista Avenue.

Ward Street’s utilities from Court to Estudillo streets would be moved underground, as well as those on side streets between Main and Green street if Martinez secures a Transportation for Livable Communities grant. Such projects generally take five years to complete, so the city will be starting with design work, which needs to be complete before staff applies for that, Pacific Gas and Electric’s Rule 20A funding and other grants.

The city has about $100,000 in hand to start this project.

A preliminary study will be started on several major street improvements in anticipation of widening Alhambra Avenue, using Senate Bill 1 revenue and gas tax money.

Upgraded amenities and other improvements would be made to existing bus stops, using about $117,000 in gas tax revenues left over from previous years.

Parks improvements include spending most of the last of Measure H bond money and revenue from other sources on Golden Hills, Highlands, John Muir and Sparacino Park, for a total of $2,455,726.

Other projects are replacing playground equipment at Cappy Rick Park, restroom and concession stand replacement at Hidden Lakes Park, replacing lights at Ignacio Plaza, completing the Susana Park interpretive signs and improving Waterfront Park Field 5.

City Hall needs modernization, from installing LED lighting and a new climate control system. This would be funded in part with about $198,000 from an existing capital improvement account. Total improvements will be more than $1 million, so staff members are evaluation the city’s options.

Martinez Senior Center needs about $60,000 in work on its climate control system, which may be offset by the Senior Citizens Club of Martinez Trust Fund.

Improvements also are needed at the city’s cultural structures, such as the John Muir Amphitheater, the historic Southern Pacific Depot and Campbell Theater. Partial funding is available through $300,000 in cultural facilities impact fees.

The city has several enterprise funds that are expected to be self-sustaining. The city’s water system needs capital improvements, such as an update of its geographic information system, for which $20,000 is available; the water mains continually need replacing, for which $400,000 is available; Webster Pump Station needs replacing, a $6 million project to be underwritten by bond revenues; the ozone generator at the water treatment plant needs replacing, at $1.5 million, which the water department will fund through bond sales; the Howe Road, Arnold Drive No. 3 and Muir Oaks pump stations need renovating, to be underwritten by $1.3 million in Water Fund money; and the Water Treatment Plant’s settled water contractors need improvement, an $800,000 project to be covered by the Water Fund.

The Martinez Marina continues to be a financial challenge, and about $50,000 from the General Fund likely will be spent to research the best options for the marina’s future.

Three parking projects are included in the Capital Improvement Plan.

One is the demolition of a building in Parking Lot 4, expected to cost $200,000. Should the city decide to use the space for something other than parking, the Parking Fund money that was used to buy the building would need to be reimbursed.

“Green” infrastructure, for clean stormwater runoff, would be built in Parking Lots 2 and 4 and other lots that will be selected in the future, and $250,000 has been set aside for this.

About 150 additional electronic meters would be installed, underwritten by the Parking Fund.

The city has a list of unfunded projects which if money sources were available, would cost $191,900,000.

Funding likely would be included in future budgets.

These future projects involved bicycle and pedestrian trails, drainage, the marina, parks, municipal buildings and structures, street maintenance, additional traffic signals and water system improvements.

The Martinez Planning Commission has affirmed the projects comply with the city’s General Plan.

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