Oregon budget in 2020 includes new Navarre Ave. waterline

Kelly J. Kaczala

        A new waterline down Oregon’s Navarre Avenue business district is one of the highlights of the city’s 2020 budget.
        “The waterline is very necessary,” said Councilman James Seaman, chairman of the finance committee, which has been meeting over the last few months to discuss next year’s budget.
        “We keep getting breaks on a regular basis on Navarre. It creates a major disruption for business owners and their customers. So we’re going to try and get that taken care of next year. That’s going to take some time, but it will start after the weather gets better. That’s going to be a pretty expensive item. It is going to cost over $1 million. We’re getting state funding, but local monies will also be spent.
        The new waterline will extend from Isaac Streets Drive to Lallendorf Road on Navarre, according to City Administrator Mike Beazley.
        “The project will lead to some disruption, but it will be a significant improvement in service. It’s time,” said Beazley.
Less spending
        The city plans to spend less next year after taking care of more costly items the previous couple of years, said Seaman.
        “In the last two years, we got caught up with our infrastructure needs. We made improvements to the water and wastewater treatment plants. So we don’t have to do a lot of work there. Our roads are in pretty good shape overall. We purchased some land for our proposed downtown center. We bought a lot of land and that was very expensive, including the former Kmart site on Navarre Avenue, and property south of that location.  We installed additional storm sewers to help some of our residents. We did a lot of improvements to the recreation department, including a new splash pad and workout facility. We are also putting in artificial turf in the infields at two baseball diamonds at the recreation center. That was expensive. There are no grants for the turf,” said Seaman. “So that’s why we’re kind of putting the brakes on spending next year. We’re minimizing spending except for very essential needs.”
         Other costs in next year’s budget include the purchase of police cars, and vehicles in other city departments.
        The city will also be hiring additional fire department staff with more full-time workers to provide 24 hour coverage, said Seaman.
        Other projects in the budget, according to Beazley, include:
        • Repaving Starr Avenue;
        • A waterline on York Street;
        • A new roadway that connects the Cedar Point Industrial Park with Wynnscape;
        • A new streets building.
        “We’re also going to be wrapping up the development of a new park with walking paths along with a flood control project on the west side of the old Eastmoreland neighborhood. It’s really going to be an attractive project. It will be an upgrade for the community. It’s a combination of flood control and a neighborhood park, with walking paths along Otter Creek. It’s a nice project.”
        The Coy Road/Navarre Avenue Intersection Safety Improvement Project will also start next year, said Beazley. 
        The intersection is along the main commercial corridor through Oregon. It experiences large volumes of traffic from I-280 to recreational areas along Lake Erie. The intersection is ranked 39th on the 2016 Urban Interstate Highway Safety Improvement Program list for Ohio.
        The proposed project was initiated by the city to reduce crashes and congestion.
        The project consists of installing a median along Navarre Avenue at the Coy Road intersection with accommodations for U-turns, a right turn lane for northbound Coy, an additional thru-right lane for southbound Coy and extending the lane to Dustin Road.
        Council is expected to vote on the new budget before the end of this year.


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