Capital projects includes funds for big projects to sewer, parks

Several notable projects are planned for this year and next.

The Oak Harbor City Council recently approved changes to the city’s comprehensive plan, which included amendments to the city’s capital improvements plan and a land-use change to a 75-acre property the city purchased last year.

The land-use change will allow the city to develop property at the end of Gun Club Road as a park. The city bought the property last year for $1.1 million and plans to build soccer fields.

The capital improvement plan outlines city projects over $50,000 through 2026. Project funding in 2021-22 is included in the biennial budget, and projects listed farther out are used for planning purposes.

Several notable projects are planned for this year and next.

Sewer and stormwater

The city’s wastewater system has roughly $3.4 million worth of projects planned for 2021-2022.

The biggest line item is $877,717 for “remaining expenses” at the sewage treatment plant this year. When asked for more clarification, Public Information Officer Sabrina Combs said the cost is for “items that come up as the project wraps up” and said it was a common practice to have money set aside for such things.

“The challenge is that it depends on the project and what is identified or needed,” she added.

There is also $650,000 set aside this year to pay for more membranes at the sewage plant to avoid another overflow event like one last February; council members approved the purchase late last summer. Staff said the membranes will be installed early this year. The city will also spend $200,000 on the sewer lagoon outfall repair before the area is given back to the Navy this year.

There are $2.3 million in stormwater projects for 2021-2022.

The most expensive project is for a feasibility study for $950,000 to see if the Freund Marsh can be used as a detention/pre-treatment pond.

Parks

There are almost $4 million worth of capital projects planned for the city’s parks in 2021-2022.

The bulk of the money is earmarked for the next two phases of improvements to Windjammer Park, totaling about $2.6 million; phase two design work is scheduled in 2021 and construction in 2022.

About $1 million will be spent on a future park at the city’s 75-acre Gun Club Road property over the next two years.

The plan also includes two Portland Loos for Flintstone Park, totaling $75,000; new playground equipment for Tyhuis and Koetje parks for $80,500; and four pickleball courts at Neil Park for $80,000 this year.

Water

The city has budgeted $7.7 million in projects for the water system planned for 2021-2022.

One of the projects is to relocate a waterline near the Highway 20/Campbell Lake Road roundabout in Anacortes for $2.3 million. There is also $763,000 set aside to study additional groundwater resources for emergency water supplies for the city, and to update its water system and emergency response plans from 2021-2023. Also budgeted is $695,000 for water pipe extensions on West Erin Park Road. The city’s goal is to expand the Goldie Road/Industrial area by extending utilities, and most of the money will be spent in 2022.

Streets

There are more than $5 million worth of street projects planned in 2021-2022.

Overlays in the Transportation Benefit District and annual street overlays account for most of the costs. One of the street projects is to create an access road on city-owned property to connect businesses that cannot access Highway 20 for a budgeted $481,500 in 2022. Another project is for the city to develop an active transportation plan this year to see how it can support modes of transportation that include “walking, biking, roller blading, or skateboarding” for $150,000.

A complete list of capital project plan amendments can be found on the city’s website.

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