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News Review
Week In Review, April 26, 2013
Posted Date: 4/26/2013 4:00 PM

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April 26, 2013
Here is the latest edition of Week In Review - a series of weekly messages from the Mayor and City Council to help Richardson residents and businesses keep up to date on events at City Hall.

News Briefs

City Council To Review Stage 3 Water Restrictions On Monday
The Richardson City Council will review the implementation of tighter water restrictions on Monday, following a decision yesterday by the North Texas Municipal Water District (NTMWD) Board of Directors to initiate Stage 3 water conservation measures. The District has set an effective date of June 1 for the more stringent restrictions, with the goal of achieving a 10 percent reduction in water use.

The NTMWD Board action was taken because of less than average rainfall in recent months and little near-term sign of improvement.

As of Thursday, April 25, Lavon Lake’s elevation was down 7.7 feet. Chapman Lake, another NTMWD water source, was down 7.9 feet. In addition, the water district still cannot use water from Lake Texoma due to the presence of invasive zebra mussels. Lake Texoma normally provides 28 percent of NTMWD’s total raw water supply. A new pipeline is being constructed to transport water to the NTMWD water treatment plant in Wylie, which would restore Lake Texoma as a water source, but the first phase of that project will not be completed until January 2014.

Click here to watch a video about the Lake Texoma pipeline, and click here to read the November 2012 edition of Richardson Today, which focuses on water quality and water supply in Richardson.


Richardson Projects Take Top Honors at DBJ Awards
The combined State Farm transactions won Deal of the Year at the Dallas Business Journal’s Best Real Estate Deals awards, presented Thursday at the Hilton Anatole in Dallas. In 2012 State Farm announced that it will anchor a $1.5-billion development in north Richardson, which will consolidate several offices in North Texas and beyond.

Other winners with Richardson ties include the KDC Richardson Project, which won in the Land Deal category and includes the new State Farm offices as well as multi-family units, hotels and retailers; State Farm at 190/Plano Road, which took top honors in the Suburban Office Deal category; and the Digital Dallas Datacampus, developed by Digital Realty Trust and KDC, in the Rehab/Reuse Deal category.

Learn more and see a complete list of winners at


Richardson Neighborhoods Among Best Places for Families with Kids
Best Neighborhoods April 26 

Three areas in Richardson ranked in the top 10 best places to live for families with kids in The Dallas Morning News’ list published Friday for the Richardson, Lake Highlands and Far North Dallas areas. The area surrounding UT Dallas ranked at No. 5, while Northeast Richardson and Northern Richardson placed at No. 7 and 8, respectively.

The survey looked at 12 quality-of-life issues, with safety, quality schools and affordability ranking as top priorities for families with kids.



Early Voting Starts Monday
Early voting for the May 11 Mayoral, Richardson City Council and RISD School Board elections begins Monday, April 29, and continues through May 7 at the Richardson Civic Center/City Hall, 411 W. Arapaho Rd. Dates and times for early voting at Dallas and Collin county locations are:

April 29-May 3
8 a.m.-5 p.m.
May 4 (Sat.)
8 a.m.-5 p.m.
May 5 (Sun.)
1-6 p.m.
May 6-7 (Mon.-Tue.)
7 a.m.-7 p.m.

Dallas County Richardson residents may vote early in the Richardson Mayoral, City Council Election and the RISD School Board Election at City Hall or at any of the other Dallas County early voting locations. Call the Dallas County Elections Department at 214-637-7937 or visit  

Collin County Richardson residents may vote early in the Mayoral and Richardson City Council Election at City Hall or at any of the other Dallas County early voting locations. If they wish to vote early in the PISD School Board Election they must use Collin County early voting locations to do so, with the following exception. Collin County voters may vote early at the Renner Frankford Library, 6400 Frankford Rd., for the PISD School Board and Richardson Mayoral and City Council elections on separate ballots. Call the Collin County Elections Department at 972-424-1460 (ext. 1990) or visit  

Election Day voting will take place Saturday, May 11 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the location designated for your precinct. Richardson City Hall is not a voting location on Election Day. For more information, contact the Richardson City Secretary at 972-744-4290.

The League of Women Voters of Richardson held a forum Wednesday featuring the candidates running for Richardson mayor. A taped replay of the forum is available to view on the City’s website at and cable TV channel on Time Warner Cable channel 16 and AT&T U-Verse channel 99. The broadcast will air on the cable channels at 2 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays and 6 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays through May 9. For more information, call 972-470-0584.


Eastbound Main Street to Close Nightly Beginning Monday
Beginning Monday, April 29, eastbound lanes of Main Street will close nightly as the City’s contractor on the Floyd Branch Watershed drainage project installs box culverts under the roadway. The closures are anticipated to take place for approximately one week, weather permitting.

The closures are expected to begin at 8 p.m. each night and conclude by 6 a.m. the following morning.

Signs will be placed in the area alerting drivers of the lane closures. Eastbound traffic on Belt Line Road/Main Street will be directed to turn north onto the US-75 frontage road, then take Greer Street to Interurban Street to continue east on Main Street. Northbound US-75 drivers wishing to turn onto eastbound Main Street will be directed to Kaufman Street then Interurban Street. (See map below.)

Storm Drain Detour Map

The project will improve drainage in the Floyd Branch Watershed, which collects drainage from 2.6 square miles in south central Richardson and eventually flows to White Rock Lake. The project will add capacity to the area’s drainage system by adding new underground drainage pipes north and south of Main Street between US-75 and the DART rail line. No existing open channels will be enclosed.

For more information about the project, visit


Council Reviews Joint Athletic Facility Feasibility Study with SVAA
Huffhines Rec Center
The City Council on Monday expressed support to conduct a feasibility study to explore the possibility of a partnership with the Spring Valley Athletic Association to expand the existing offerings at Huffhines Recreation Center to include multi-use courts. The SVAA board approved nearly $26,000 to cover half of the cost of the feasibility study, and as a potential partner in the venture, the City has been asked to fund the other half.

SVAA is a non-profit, volunteer organization that sponsors youth baseball, softball, T-ball, basketball, football and volleyball leagues. They use City of Richardson, Richardson ISD, Dallas ISD and private facilities for games and practices but are limited by schedules already in place at those facilities. The organization is seeking a partner to help develop a multi-use facility that would be primarily dedicated to its youth sports and schedule them as a top priority, although the facility could be used for other events, such as Corporate Challenge.

The City of Richardson’s Parks, Recreation and Open Space Master Plan calls for an expansion of Huffhines Recreation Center to include additional gymnasium space and if feasible the development of a separate venue to include 12 to 16 courts for volleyball and basketball. A partnership between the City and SVAA could speed up the recreation center expansion or development of another venue.

The feasibility study is expected to take six to eight months to complete.

Watch the City Council work session presentation at


Wildflower! Festival Contest Winner Announced
Shelby Celeste Thornton
Shelby Celeste Thornton, a senior at Naaman Forest High School, will perform alongside Elton John tribute artist Rocket Man on the classic duet, “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart,” at the Wildflower! Festival set for May 17 to 19 at Galatyn Park. Rocket Man will perform five times throughout the weekend at the Eisemann Center’s Hill Performance Hall.

A panel of three judges selected Thornton, 18, as the top entry in the “Elton and Kiki Dee? Why Not Elton and Me?” contest. Finalists competed in a live audition before the judges April 21 at Huffhines Recreation Center.

Thornton, who is planning to attend her senior prom after the performance on May 18, said she is honored to have the opportunity to perform an Elton John classic in front of his many fans at Wildflower! and that being late to prom “is definitely worth it.”

The Sachse resident has performed in shows across North Texas and is planning to attend Collin College to earn an associate of arts degree. She hopes to eventually attend an out-of-state college to study a career in the music industry.

For more information on the Wildflower! Festival, visit or check out the event’s Facebook page at


City Council Approves Cultural Arts Master Plan
Cultural Arts

The City Council officially approved the Cultural Arts Master Plan at its meeting Monday. The document, which was created with the help of a consultant from Lord Cultural Resources, is designed to serve as a guide to help strengthen the arts community in Richardson by building synergies among the various performance arts groups and enhancing existing arts facilities in the area.

Read the Cultural Arts Master Plan online and watch the work session presentation at


Council Hears Update on Fire Training Center, Approves Change Order
Fire Safety Training Complex
Construction of the City’s new Fire Training Center and Emergency Operations Center is on schedule, with completion of the main building expected in July and completion of all elements expected in September. The City Council heard an update on the project Monday and approved $303,000 in additional funds to add three more backup dispatch consoles, afford space for radio system equipment and provide flexibility for future emergency communication system upgrades. Excess funds designated for the purchase of the emergency communications system in 2010 will pay for the upgrades, which are not expected to delay the project.

The new Fire Training Center is part of the 2010 Bond Program and will replace existing facilities that are outdated and in poor condition. A backup emergency dispatch center and an emergency operations center were added to the project to improve the City’s ability to respond to major incidents. Funding for additional elements of the facility will come from several sources, including emergency management grants.

The existing facility, on Lookout Drive east of Plano Road, includes a training tower that was built in the early 1950s and classroom space built in the early 1970s. The new Fire Training Center will be located near the existing one, on City-owned property previously used as a storage facility.

The Training Center will be used to train new recruits, for current firefighters to conduct required training exercises and to conduct multi-company drills that are required for the City to maintain its fire insurance rating.

Watch the City Council work session presentation at


City Awards Bid for Street and Bridge Improvements 
The City Council on Monday awarded a contract in the amount of $2.9 million to RKM Utility Services for construction of improvements to Dublin and Dover drives from Belt Line Road to Colfax Drive and the Dumont Drive bridge over Hunt Branch. The project includes the removal and replacement of street paving, repair of sidewalks, drainage improvement and water line replacement on Dublin and Dover drives and the construction of a 36-foot long arched bridge on Dumont Drive.

The improvements will be funded through the 2010 Bond Program, Water and Sewer Utility Program and the Drainage Utility Program. Construction is expected to begin in May and be complete by May 2014.


City Adopts International Building and Fire Codes
The Richardson City Council has approved the adoption of the 2012 International Codes (or I-Codes), which includes the 2011 National Electrical Code that provides standards for installation of electrical conductors and equipment. Doing so ensures greater construction quality and safer building techniques, more clearly defines building code language and methods of installation, and use of innovative processes to increase efficiency and reduce construction costs.

I-Codes are a set of comprehensive, coordinated building safety, property maintenance and fire prevention codes that have been adopted in 50 states and the District of Columbia. Applying the latest versions of I-Codes helps to make people safer and reduces costs by using consistent, coordinated building regulations that allow new products and innovative technologies, as well as sustainable design and construction.


Police Department Hosts National Take-Back Day
The Richardson Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association and Richardson Police Department are participating in the National Drug Take Back Initiative, a national program that allows people to safely and anonymously dispose of prescription and over-the-counter medications. Expired and excess drugs will be collected from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 27, at the Richardson Civic Center’s south parking lot.

Acceptable items include controlled, noncontrolled and over-the-counter medications. Liquid medications should be tightly sealed in their original containers. Unacceptable items include intra-venous solutions, injectibles, syringes and illicit substances.

For more information on Richardson’s event, visit Learn about the national program at


Journey Tribute Band to Perform at Cottonwood
ESCAPE - The Dallas Journey Tribute Band, will perform from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Saturday, May 4, at the Cottonwood Art Festival. The band has been together since 2006 and has performed the high energy music of arena rock supergroup Journey throughout the state. Learn more about the band at

In addition to more than 240 artists displaying work in 14 categories, the juried show will feature local bands performing throughout the weekend. See a complete schedule at

Cottonwood Art Festival takes place from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, May 4, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, May 5, at Cottonwood Park, 1321 W. Belt Line Rd. Parking and admission are free. Artists’ works are available for purchase, as are food and beverages.

Learn more about the festival at or on Facebook at A free Cottonwood Art Festival mobile app is available for iPhone users through the festival website or on iTunes. 

  Eisemann Center/Arts/Cultural & Community Events 

Ed Asner Starring as FDR
Ed Asner as FDR
Emmy Award-winner Ed Asner will star in "FDR" at 8 p.m. Saturday, April 27, at the Eisemann Center. The solo performance drama explores the life of one of America’s best-loved presidents and the events and decisions that shaped a nation.

Tickets cost $37 to $55 and are available at or by calling 972-744-4650.


Lone Star Wind Orchestra to Perform at Eisemann Center
The Lone Star Wind Orchestra will perform "Notes from Japan" at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, April 28, at the Eisemann Center. The show features Japanese music, including Yasuhide Ito’s “Funa-Uta” and Toshio Mashima’s “Les Trois Notes Du Japan.”

Tickets cost $20 to $40 and are available at or by calling 972-744-4650. For more information about the show, visit


Application Deadline for Library Teen Summer Volunteers is Tuesday
Tuesday at 6 p.m. is the deadline to submit an application for the Summer Teen Volunteer Program at the Richardson Public Library. Applicants must be entering ninth through 12th grade in the fall of 2013, live in Richardson and have a valid Richardson Library card.

Applications are available at the Library’s Youth Services Desk through Tuesday, April 30. For more information, call 972-744-4358.


FOL Hosts Spring Book Sale
The Friends of the Richardson Public Library will hold a book sale from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. today and Saturday and from 2 to 5 p.m. Sunday in the Library’s Basement Program Room. For more information, visit or call 972-744-4350.


Taste of Eastside Set for Saturday
The 2013 Taste of Eastside is set from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at 700 E. Campbell Rd. The event will feature food samples for $1 from Eastside restaurants, with proceeds benefiting Richardson AnimaLuv and The Warren Center. JJ Garrett Band will perform live music, and attendees may enter a drawing for door prizes. Taste of Eastside will also include activities for kids.

For more information, visit


North Texas Cake Show at Civic Center
The North Texas Cake Show is coming to the Richardson Civic Center from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. The event will feature cake competitions, classes, demonstrations, vendors and raffles. General admission is $5 per person or $8 for a weekend pass. Children 12 and younger may enter free with an adult.

For more information, visit


Summer Camp Registration Continues
Summer Camps

Registration is ongoing for the Parks and Recreation Department's Summer Camps and Aquatic Programs. Both programs are very popular with parents and kids, and classes fill up quickly.

Richardson's Parks and Recreation Department makes it easy to sign up for classes by offering an online registration form. Visit the City homepage or to find the forms to register and pay online. The link also provides access to area athletic leagues and other courses.

View the online edition of the Camps and Swimming Guide at


Richardson Animal Shelter Pet of the Week
Meet Oscar! This guy came to us as a stray about three weeks ago. He is a neutered male, boxer terrier mix, about 4 years old, house trained, and he's up to date on all his vaccinations. Oscar is a happy, playful, outgoing dog that would love to be your big lap dog. Contact the Animal Shelter (972-744-4480) about Oscar or other animals available for adoption.

For information about other animals available for adoption, visit the Animal Shelter’s Facebook page at 


Related Links
City Council videos:
City Council agenda:
City Council meeting documents:

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 Bob Townsend
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