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News Review
Week In Review, Aug. 31, 2012
Posted Date: 8/31/2012
Week In Review Image

Aug. 31, 2012
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. A list of links for stories in this edition is available at the bottom of the page.


Demolition of Former Continental Inn Begins
The City Council and other City leaders grabbed sledgehammers earlier this week in honor of the demolition of the former Continental Inn, which the City purchased along with adjacent property in July as part of a redevelopment plan for the West Spring Valley Road corridor.

Demolition of the Continental Inn is expected to be complete by mid-September. The property will be used as part of a retail redevelopment plan for the West Spring Valley Corridor.
Continental Inn
Click the links below for more information about the redevelopment project:


City Facilities to be Closed for Labor Day Holiday
Several City facilities and services will be unavailable or limited on Monday, Sept. 3 in observance of Labor Day. The following outlines the City’s facility and solid waste schedule:

Tennis Center
The Tennis Center will be open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday, Sept. 3.

Facility Closures
With the exception of mandatory public safety and Public Services Department facilities, all City offices, facilities and recreation centers will be closed in observance of the Labor Day holiday.
City facilities including the Richardson City Hall/Civic Center complex, Library, Municipal Court, Animal Shelter, Heights and Huffhines Recreation Centers and the Senior Center will reopen with normal hours Tuesday, Sept. 4.
Call the Police Department at 972-744-4800 for emergencies when the Animal Shelter is closed.

Solid Waste and Recycling
There will be no solid waste or recycling services on Monday, Sept. 3. The table below shows recycling make-up days.

Recycle collection days affected by holiday Make-up day
Monday, Sept. 3 Tuesday, Sept. 4
Tuesday, Sept. 4 Wednesday, Sept. 5


City Pools will be Open for Final Weekend of 2012
The City pools officially closed for the season Aug. 12, but Canyon Creek and Glenville pools will be open for the last time this summer from 1 to 8 p.m. Sept. 1-3.


NTMWD Board Recommends Maintaining Stage 2 Water Conservation
The North Texas Municipal Water District, which supplies water to Richardson, recently voted to remain in Stage 2 of its Water Conservation and Drought Contingency and Water Emergency Response Plan. This means that Richardson residents will continue to be allowed to use sprinklers and irrigation systems up to twice a week on designated days.

In Richardson, watering is allowed on Tuesdays and Saturdays at addresses that end in even numbers (2,4,6,8,0). It is permitted on Wednesdays and Sundays at addresses that end in odd numbers (1,3,5,7,9).

Watering is prohibited every day between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m., and residents are encouraged to skip watering if it rains within a couple days of a scheduled watering day. Soaker hoses and drip irrigation systems are allowed for up to two hours any day.

Recent rainfalls and successful water conservation efforts led to the decision to remain in Stage 2 restrictions. Under Stage 2, NTMWD has set a 10 percent water conservation goal, which Richardson has exceeded. However, the water supply remains reduced by 28 percent because of Lake Texoma’s infestation of zebra mussels, an invasive species that attach to facilities and pipes that pump water. NTMWD officials expect to resume pumping water from Lake Texoma in fall 2013 after the completion of a water pipeline extension.

For more information, visit or For more information about water restrictions in Richardson, visit


City of Murphy Decides Against Supporting Joint Recreation Center At Breckinridge Park
The City of Richardson continues to consider options for building a new recreation and outdoor aquatics center at Breckinridge Park now that common ground could not be found for a partnership with the City of Murphy on the project. Although there is no funding at this time, the City of Richardson’s Parks Master Plan calls for a recreation center with outdoor aquatics features to be built at Breckinridge Park as part of the long range plan for the City.

The City of Murphy had expressed interest in a potential partnership on the project since it currently has no recreation or aquatics center of its own. A thorough study was conducted involving both cities, however, the Murphy City Council decided not to move forward with the project saying that it did not want to make a large investment outside of its city limits, and that the capital investment was too great for a city of its size.
Watch the work session discussion item at


City Wins Computerworld Magazine Award
Richardson has won a 2012 Best of BI (Business Intelligence) Editor’s Choice Award in Computerworld Magazine’s inaugural business intelligence awards competition. Richardson was the only city nationwide to earn the prestigious honor, which recognizes public-sector and private-sector organizations that use business intelligence and predictive analytics to gain operational insights.

The City was recognized for its use of a data reporting system called WebFocus, developed by Information Builders. Six years ago, Richardson replaced its outdated reporting systems with WebFocus, which is user-friendly and has improved operations in every City department.
Click the link below to read the Computerworld story about Richardson and its use of the WebFocus system:


Cottonwood Art Festival to feature nation’s top artists
The works of the nation's top visual artists will be on display Oct. 6-7 at the bi-annual Cottonwood Art Festival.

Now in its 43rd year, the prestigious show is rated one of the top art festivals in the United States and is the premier fine arts event in North Texas. Featuring the finest arts and crafts in the nation, the twice-a-year event generates more than $2 million in art sales annually.

The festival is set for 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Oct. 6 and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Oct. 7 at Richardson's Cottonwood Park, just east of the intersection of Belt Line Road and Coit Road. Full details are available at

Cottonwood Art Festival is a juried show. This year, more than 1,000 artists submitted their work for consideration. Jurors selected 240 artists to exhibit their work in 16 fine art/fine crafts categories that include 3-D mixed media, glass, jewelry, metal, watercolor, photography, sculpture and more.


DART Announces Labor Day Schedule
Many DART services will be unavailable or will operate on a limited schedule on Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 3. DART buses and light rail trains will operate on a Sunday schedule, and Paratransit services for customers with disabilities will operate on a Saturday schedule.

The Customer Information Center will be available to answer questions about schedules by calling 214-979-1111 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more details about DART’s Labor Day services and schedules, visit


Community Welcomes Visitors for Japan-America Grassroots Summit
About a dozen Japanese visitors are staying at homes in Richardson during the 2012 Japan-America Grassroots Summit, which began Thursday when Mayor Bob Townsend welcomed the guests to City Hall. The event runs through Sept. 2 and promotes new opportunities between Japanese and Richardson businesses.

The summit includes a tour at the University of Texas at Dallas and Fujitsu Network Communications and a progressive dinner for the visitors and their home stay hosts. More than 150 visitors from Japan are touring North Texas during the summit.

Richardson is one of 15 North Texas cities selected to host the visitors as part of the annual gathering of Japanese and American citizens. The summit, held alternately in Japan and the U.S., honors one of the first friendships between a Japanese person and an American, a unique bond begun in 1841 that continues through their descendants to the present day.
Japan Summit

Click the link below to view Mike Skelton, Director of the Mayor's Office of International Business, as he discusses the Japan-America Grassroots Summit and other initiatives he is overseeing.


Parks and Recreation Fall Expo is Sept. 8
The Parks and Recreation Department will showcase its fall programs and activities at a free Fall Expo from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 8, at Huffhines Recreation Center, 200 N. Plano Rd.

Instructors will be at the event to give demonstrations and answer questions about fall programs, which range from technology classes to sports leagues. The Expo will also include refreshments, a bounce house, drawings for free classes and a trampoline performance.

For more information, contact the Parks and Recreation Department at 972-744-4300.


September Richardson Today Mailed This Week
The September edition of Richardson Today began arriving in mailboxes this week. The latest edition focuses on environmental sustainability and features a story on efforts to promote energy efficiency at Huffhines Recreation Center. Other top stories focus on redevelopment efforts along West Spring Valley Road and Central Expressway and the City’s efforts to prevent the spread of West Nile virus.

Richardson Today is mailed to every residence in the City and is also available at the Heights and Huffhines Recreation Centers, the Senior Center, City Hall and at the Richardson Public Library. A Richardson Today interactive edition is also accessible through the link below. Ask your local mail carrier if you live in the City and do not receive your copy of Richardson Today.

Click the link below to read the latest edition of Richardson Today, as well as archived editions:


City Council Awards Breckinridge Bridge and Alley Reconstruction Bids
The City Council awarded bids at its meeting Monday night to construct a pedestrian bridge in Breckinridge Park and reconstruct three alley segments. Both projects are funded through the 2010 Bond Program.

The Council awarded a bid from Jim Bowman Construction for $263,800.50 to build a fabricated timber truss pedestrian bridge over the Beck Branch of Rowlett Creek. It will replace a bridge that was damaged and removed in 2006. Construction is expected to begin in September and be complete by January 2013.

The Council also awarded a bid of $229,579 from Estrada Concrete Company to reconstruct alley segments  along Shannon Lane, Arvada Drive and Merrie Circle. The project will include alley pavement with a related sidewalk, curb and sodding. Construction is expected to begin in September and be complete by December.
2010 Bond Program

Click the link below for information on the 2010 Bond Program: 


Tickets for Richardson Reads One Book Author Lecture Available Beginning Tuesday
Chitra Divakaruni, author of the 2012 Richardson Reads One Book selection “One Amazing Thing,” will present a free lecture at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 20, in the Richardson High School auditorium, 1250 W. Belt Line Rd. Complimentary tickets to the lecture will be available at the Richardson Public Library beginning Tuesday, Sept. 4.

Divakaruni is an award-winning author, poet and teacher of writing. Her work has been published in more than 50 magazines and in more than 50 anthologies.
Click the link below for information about Richardson Reads One Book:


Dallas Stamp Fair at Civic Center
The Texas Stamp Dealers Association will hold the Dallas Stamp Fair from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the Richardson Civic Center, 411 W. Arapaho Rd. Admission is free.

Attendees will have the opportunity to buy, sell or trade postal stamps. For more information, visit


Citizenship Classes at Library to Begin Sept. 9
The Richardson Public Library will hold a series of citizenship classes from 2 to 5 p.m. every Sunday from Sept. 9 to Nov. 18 in the Basement Training Room.

Class members must be legal residents who have lived in the United States continuously for at least five years (three years if married to a U.S. citizen), have no criminal record, pass a basic English test and have a Richardson Public Library card.

For more information or to register for the class, call Yolanda Medina at 972-744-4368.


Richardson Animal Shelter Pet of the Week
This is Pluto! He is a neutered male about a year old. He is up to date on all vaccinations and gets along with cats, some dogs and children. Very playful and loves to go for walks. Contact the Animal Shelter (972-744-4480) about Pluto or other animals available for adoption.

Animal Shelter Facebook Page


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

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 Bob Townsend
Bob Townsend
Place 1
 Laura Maczka
Mayor Pro Tem
Laura Maczka
Place 4
 Mark Solomon
Council Member
Mark Solomon
Place 2
 Scott Dunn
Council Member
Scott Dunn
Place 3
 Kendal Hartley
Council Member
Kendal Hartley
Place 5
 City Council Member Steve Mitchell
Council Member
Steve Mitchell
Place 6
 Amir Omar
Council Member
Amir Omar
Place 7