MOUNT VERNON —Many projects on the city’s “to do” list have been crossed off since the city hired a full-time engineer in 2009.
“When I first started, the mayor (Richard Mavis) had a wish list on his wall. The majority of those projects were completed in 2009; 2010 has been another good year,” Cameron Keaton told Mount Vernon City Council, Monday night.
Some of the projects completed in 2010 include the Critical Street Improvement Project where nearly 50 streets were resurfaced in the city.
“We were able to pave some streets that haven’t been paved for 20 to 30 years,” Keaton said.
The Brick Street/Curb Replacement Project replaced the brick street and curbing on North McKenzie Street from Chestnut to Sugar streets. Progress is moving forward on South McArthur Street with the work expected to be completed in early 2011.
Other projects completed in 2010 include:
•Phase II of the environmental assessment on the former American National Can property.
•Air conditioning replacement at City Hall.
•Wooster Road water tower rehabilitation.
•Hiawatha Water Park/Pool wading pool improvements.
•Kokosing Center Run Rehabilitation Project.
•Paving Ohio 229 in the eastern section of the city.
•Demolition of several dilapidated properties through the Neighborhood Stabilization Program.
•Upgrades to wastewater treatment plant.
•Braddock Street bridge replacement.
•New sidewalks on Sychar Road and the new parking lot at Hiawatha Park.
•Purchase of the Hiawatha School and contract for demolition. Demolition work is expected to start after Jan. 1, Keaton said.
Keaton explained the engineering department is responsible for issuing permits including zoning, sewer, water tap, street opening, special flood hazard area development, storm water management, storm water management and sediment control, sidewalk permits and historical review applications.
In addition to issuing permits, the engineer’s office is responsible for:
•The oversight of the design and construction of any capital project such as roads, bridges, water and sewer systems or buildings.
•Observation of construction sites in the city to maintain the public’s safety.
•Management of storm water.
•Surveying, mapping and Geographic Information Systems.
•Review of commercial and residential building plans.
•Marking of underground sanitary, storm and water utilities for contractors or individuals.
•Preparation and administration of all contracts documents for all bid projects.
The engineer’s office is also responsible for keeping records of roads, water and sewer systems and zoning issues in the city. Keaton told council one of his goals is to convert all these records into electronic data so that information could be easily accessed by any city department.
“We need better file management,” Keaton said. “It would be nice to have a city-wide system.”
Keaton said his department has acquired a global positioning unit that will help employees electronically locate items such as waterlines when out on job sites. Within two years Keaton said he would like to have all the city’s utility information integrated into the system.
Looking ahead to 2011, Keaton already has his “to do” list in place and it includes the brick streets project, Mulberry Street curb and sidewalk project, Mound View Cemetery retaining wall replacement, east end water tower rehabilitation, crossover road from Coshocton Avenue to Yauger Road, a new street garage that could possibly house two departments, upgrades to the intersection near Coshocton Avenue and Yauger Road by CVS, a drinking water source protection program and the development of standards for demolition projects in the city.