City Council approved the final list of projects and dollar amounts for a nearly $16 million general obligation bond package to be presented to voters in June.
The set of four proposals councilors approved at their February 28 meeting focus on street improvements, upgraded storm sirens, a new animal welfare shelter and a dog park , a range of park improvements and a multitude of community development projects.
The grand total of the proposal is $15,725,000.
The city council will consider a resolution at its March 28 meeting calling for an election on June 28, according to Parks and Recreation Department Director Jeff Edwards.
Along with city planner Brad Bates, Edwards has been overseeing a committee of city staff and community leaders since last fall to help determine what the proposal would look like.
Leading up to the March council meeting, city staff members will work with bond attorney John Weidman and city attorney David Weatherford to establish the language and proposal descriptions councilors will consider.
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Proposal 1, in the amount of $3,915,000, would fund a multitude of street resurfacing and maintenance projects throughout the community.
“We have money in place for overlays, but frankly it’s not enough to really cover the needs of the community,” Bates told advisers, adding that it’s hoped that such a large influx of money would make a significant difference. .
Proposition 2, colloquially called the public safety program, would total $3,775,000.
This would allocate $825,000 to upgrade and modernize storm sirens across the city, including adding up to half a dozen additional sirens.
The biggest chunk of Proposal 2 – $3,090,000 – would fund the design and construction of a new animal welfare facility on Wekiwa Road, just west of 129th West Avenue.
The city already owns the land, which would allow more funding to be invested in the new facility rather than paying to acquire the property.
Bates told advisers that because Sand Springs Animal Welfare’s mission has evolved, the current shelter no longer meets its needs.
“The way our shelter is currently run is more of a caring environment,” he said, with more emphasis on the return or return of pets brought to the shelter and less on euthanasia after a short holding period.
“We don’t do much of that,” he said. “We are basically, by all locals, a murder-free shelter today, and we would like to continue and be able to expand that.
“And so we’re keeping the animals a lot longer and caring for them, and so we need a larger facility that’s adequate with the type of programming that we’d like to do,” Bates said.
In 2021, Sand Springs Animal Welfare welcomed more than 1,150 animals, about half dogs and half cats, according to city data.
More than 90% left the shelter alive, including through adoption, being picked up by their owners, or being transferred to other animal welfare organizations focused on finding them new homes.
Proposal 3 encompasses about a dozen individual projects under the auspices of Parks and Recreation.
“Parks and recreation-related projects have been largely successful over the past few years,” Edwards said. “As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, outdoor recreation has increased in all park environments.
“This GO Bond effort will replace some of the oldest recreational facilities in the community to meet the growing need for outdoor recreational opportunities throughout the community.”
The largest project in dollar terms is a “nearly complete rehabilitation” of Page Park, between 10th and 11th streets along Roosevelt Avenue, at $1.2 million, although the bond proposal only asks for the half of this amount.
The other half is expected to come from a grant from the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which the property has received in the past, Edwards said.
Proposed features would include new play areas with slides, swings and climbing elements; outdoor physical training equipment; a paddling pool; toilets and shelter; enlarged car park and site lighting.
Edwards said the rehabilitation of Page Park is the most exciting part of the bond package for him.
“When we upgraded Pratt Civitan Park, the features we added provided a destination park with immediate increased usage,” he said.
“If these features are approved for funding, Page Park will become a true destination park with quality amenities for citizens of all ages on the north side of the community.”
The other characteristics of proposal 3 are:
• Lighting upgrades to Case Community Park softball fields and surface improvements to Case softball, soccer and baseball fields for $1,035,000.
• Three portable toilet trailers for use in Case Park and for special events elsewhere in the community, for $245,000.
• Neighborhood trail improvements for $540,000, including Saddlerock Trail, Oklahoma 97 and 34th Street, which adjoins Highway 97 Trail; Angus Park Trail; Concord Trail, adjoining Boyd Trail; and the Sand Springs Lake Trail, which adjoins the KATY Trail and the upcoming 81st West Avenue Trail project.
• Expansion of the City Park Maintenance Facility, $205,000.
The current facility, built in 2008, is too small to accommodate current personnel and equipment, leaving all city passenger vehicles and major equipment exposed to the elements, Edwards said.
• Construction of a dog park of approximately 1 acre adjacent to the new animal welfare facility, for $410,000.
• Interior renovations and repairs to the Sand Springs Cultural and Historical Museum, for $205,000.
• Parking improvements at Canyons at Blackjack Ridge Golf Course, $515,000.
Proposal 4, totaling $3,710,000, would fund or help fund three major community development projects.
The first project, in the amount of $1,135,000, would fund paved parking lots for the BMX park at Case Community Park, the softball fields and Great Lawn as well as the paving of the road between the softball fields and the BMX park .
The second project, in the amount of $1,545,000, would fund a downtown streetscape plan to match ongoing work on Main Street.
The final segment is the design and construction of a community gathering area and plaza at the northwest corner of Broadway and Main streets adjacent to downtown Charles Page Triangle Park.
That project — which reportedly totals around $4 million but for which the city is only asking $1,030,000, which would be its share — would be in conjunction with Sand Springs Public Schools, which would fund the rest.
City officials are optimistic about the fate of the bond package, both with the council and with voters.
City Manager Mike Carter previously said past municipal bond proposals were accepted with more than 80% support “because I think we’re taking the time to get public input.”
Edwards is also happy with how the package came together.
“I think the committee has done a great job of evaluating citywide efforts that will improve the overall image and services of Sand Springs,” he said Friday.
“With a well-thought-out plan like the one that has been implemented, I don’t see how it couldn’t succeed with the successes the community has shown us in the past.”