June 21, 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.
TxDOT Hosts Open House on US 75 Corridor Study
More than 100 people attended a public meeting Thursday at the Richardson Civic Center to provide input for a Texas Department of Transportation study on proposed improvements to the US 75 corridor between I-635 and State Highway 121. At the public meeting, attendees read information about traffic problems and possible solutions on US 75, looked at maps of the corridor and shared feedback with TxDOT representatives.
The study addresses long range corridor needs through improvements to transit, arterials, and US 75 main lane capacity. The Richardson City Council has developed 10 guiding principles for the study so that any reconstruction of US 75 will be mindful of the highway’s dual role as a component of the greater statewide transportation network as well as an essential contributor to the long-term health and vitality of Richardson.
TxDOT expects to hold several public meetings as it continues the study through 2015. Learn more about the study and read the City Council’s guiding principles at cor.net/US75study.
PGBT Ramps at Shiloh Closed This Weekend
The eastbound President George Bush Turnpike exit ramp to Shiloh Road and westbound PGBT entrance ramp from Shiloh Road will be closed from 8 p.m. tonight through 5 a.m. Monday for removal and replacement of concrete pavement. Eastbound motorists will be detoured to the West Renner Road exit to access Shiloh Road, while westbound drivers will access the turnpike from the entrance ramp past West Renner Road.
For more information visit www.ntta.org or call 214-224-3030.
Storm Safe Room Program Waitlist Opens
The North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG) will open a waitlist for a safe room rebate program beginning tonight. The program could provide rebates for safe rooms that furnish protection from severe weather.
The waitlist will open one county at a time. Collin County residents may join the waitlist beginning at 7 p.m. tonight. Dallas County residents may join beginning at 8 a.m. Saturday, June 22. Once open, each county’s waitlist will not close.
Those who have already applied for the Metro Safe Room Rebate Program will receive a confirmation notice and do not need to reapply. The program provides a 50 percent rebate on construction of a safe room, up to $3,000.
The waitlist will be an important tool used to assess demand for the program when NCTCOG applies for additional federal funding for the rebate program. If additional funding is secured, NCTCOG will utilize the waitlist and notify applicants of their acceptance into the program on a first come, first served basis.
To join the waitlist, register at nctsaferoom.com after the time designated for the list to open for your county. You may also call 817-695-9235 and leave a voicemail with your name, phone number and address, including county. No documentation is needed at this time.
The program is not retroactive, so applicants must be pre-approved prior to installing a safe room.
New Online Payment Option Available for Water/Sewer Bills
Richardson’s Water and Sewer Customer Service Department has added a new online payment option for customers.
With Quick Pay, customers are able to make one-time credit card payments without needing to create an online account or logging into their existing account. Visit cor.net/quickpay to use the new payment service.
Customers who create an online account may pay their bills with a one-time or recurring credit card payment and may also view account history online. (Quick Pay customers will not have access to account history and are not able to set up recurring payments.) Visit cor.net/waterpayment for more details.
The City accepts American Express, Discover, MasterCard or Visa for online credit card payments.
Heights Family Aquatic Center Nears Completion
Construction crews have been busy this week adding the final touches to the Heights Family Aquatic Center, which is set to open at 10 a.m. July 12 with a ribbon cutting ceremony. Contractors have been putting the final finish on the walls of the pool, finishing construction of the waterslides, installing light fixtures and completing the shade structures.
The Heights Family Aquatic Center will have 8,000 square feet of surface water and will feature a zero-entry pool with splash playground, current channel, vortex pool, instructional water area, lap swim, and double-tube slide. It is located next door to the new Heights Recreation Center, which celebrated its grand opening in May
Both facilities are funded through the 2010 Bond Program and are designed to fit with the surrounding neighborhoods’ midcentury modern architecture.
Learn more about the Family Aquatic Center and fees for the 2013 season at cor.net/index.aspx?page=32.
With mosquitoes beginning their annual increase in activity, the Richardson Health Department is implementing its plan to protect people from the West Nile virus. Twelve traps placed throughout the city are tested each week, allowing the Health Department to keep a close eye on whether the virus is appearing in mosquito populations.
In addition to increased monitoring, the City is expanding the use of larvicide, initiating the use of mosquito-eating fish in stagnant water, treating storm drains for both adult mosquitoes and larvae, and increasing communication with the public and other health departments in the region. Richardson is also working to eliminate stagnant water breeding sources, including through the new stagnant swimming pool abatement program.
If West Nile virus is found within the mosquito population, the City will use ground-based spraying to target the areas where the virus is identified.
More mosquitos are appearing in traps than at this time last year, and residents need to take active steps to protect themselves from getting bitten. To protect from mosquito bites, people are asked to follow the Four D’s:
- DRAIN standing water around the home
- Use insect repellent containing DEET
- Avoid being outdoors at DUSK and DAWN when mosquitoes are most active
- DRESS to protect yourself with long sleeves and pants to reduce skin exposure
For more information about mosquito control, including a map that shows weekly West Nile virus test results and actions taken to control mosquitoes in your neighborhood, visit cor.net/mosquito. There, you may also sign up online for e-mail news alerts about West Nile virus and mosquito spraying.
Health Department employees treat a storm drain for mosquitoes.
"Richardson Today" Social Media Audience is Growing
Join a growing number of people who are getting the most current news about the City of Richardson on Facebook at facebook.com/RichardsonToday. This week, the Facebook page surpassed 600 likes, just over a year after the page launched. And there are nearly 300 people following Richardson Today on Twitter at twitter.com/RichardsonToday.
Through its social media channels, the City posts information, photos and live updates about news, projects and events happening in Richardson.
Summer Camps are Under Way
Richardson’s Summer Camp Program for children age 5 to 15 launched Monday and will continue through Aug. 9. The City offers a Kinder Camp for children age 5 and 6, a Playground Camp and Elementary Camp for children age 7 to 11 and a Teen Camp for children age 12 to 15.
Visit cor.net/corcamps to learn more about the Summer Camp program and cor.net/parksonline to register for a camp session.
RISD Runoff Election Results
Lanet Greenhaw has been reelected to Place 4 on the Richardson ISD Board of Trustees after receiving 75.9 percent of the vote in Saturday’s runoff election. Rachel Chumney received 24.1 percent of the vote. For more information, visit the Dallas County Elections Department website at dallascountyvotes.org.
Richardson Wireless Klub to Conduct 24-Hour Ham Radio Demonstration
The Richardson Wireless Klub will conduct a 24-hour ham radio demonstration from noon to noon Saturday, June 22, to Sunday, June 23, at the pavilion in Cottonwood Park. The demonstration will show how ham radio can be used for emergency radio communications when other methods, such as cellphones and telephone lines, are unavailable. The event is part of the American Radio Relay League’s nationwide Field Day, during which amateur radio operators will test their emergency communications skills.
Richardson Wireless Klub volunteers assist the City during the annual Christmas Parade and help out at other events throughout the year. Wireless Klub volunteers also coordinate monthly emergency siren tests with the City of Richardson Office of Emergency Management, and members participate in the Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES) and the Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES).
It meets at 6:30 p.m. the second Monday of each month at St. Barnabas Presbyterian Church, 1220 W. Belt Line Rd. For more information, visit k5rwk.org.
Decorate a T-Shirt at the Library
Teens in sixth through 12th grade are invited to decorate a T-shirt or other item at the Library from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 25, in the Basement Program Room. Attendees are asked to bring a T-shirt, bandana or bag, and the Library will provide paint and supplies.
For more information, contact the Youth Services Department at 972-744-4358.
Professional Organizer to Speak at Library
Professional organizer Allison Venuto will present Organize It! from 10:30 to 11:45 a.m. Saturday in the Richardson Public Library’s Basement Program Room. The free program for adults will feature information on what to do with family items that have been collected through the years.
Registration is not required. For more information, call 972-744-4376.
Local Dance Groups to Perform at Eisemann Center
Several dance groups will perform at the Eisemann Center this week. See a full schedule and purchase tickets at eisemanncenter.com, or call the Ticket Office at 972-744-4650.
Richardson Community Band to Perform Free Concert
The Richardson Community Band will perform a free concert at 7 p.m. Sunday on the lawn of the Richardson City Hall/Civic Center, 411 W. Arapaho Rd. “The Musical Zoo” will feature songs about animals, including “Turkey in the Straw,” “Monkey Business” and “Carnival of the Animals.”
Families are invited to bring lawn chairs or blankets and a picnic supper to enjoy an evening of music. For more information and to see a list of upcoming free concert dates, visit richardsoncommunityband.org.
Crime Watch Patrol Class Set for June 27
The Richardson Police Department’s Crime Prevention Unit has scheduled a free Crime Watch Patrol class for 6 to 10 p.m. Thursday, June 27, at a location to be determined. Individuals interested in attending the class are required to complete and submit an application and pass a background check before they receive approval to attend. Applications can be submitted online at bit.ly/11Xiwuv.
For more information, contact the Richardson Police Department Crime Prevention Unit at 972-744-4955.
Richardson Animal Shelter Pet of the Week
This is Miss Tubby! She is a large, sweet girl who was given up when her loving owner passed away. She is about 3 years old, spayed, and current on all her vaccinations. And to celebrate Adopt a Cat Month, all adult cats are free the month of June!
For information about other animals available for adoption, visit the Animal Shelter’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/RichardsonAnimalShelter.
City Council videos: http://bit.ly/LSHJzE
City Council agenda: http://bit.ly/QoOWF4
City Council meeting documents: http://bit.ly/OrSIQ2
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