Friday, June 19, 2009

Work Around the Hood

At long last Accent Landscaping has begun to clear weeds and clean-up trash at the Louisiana detention ponds between Memphis and Sacramento. Although they had finished the project financed by open space funds which paid for this ponding area as well as the Van Buren Dam farther north on Alabama, Accent had yet to clean-up. Weeds and trash accumulated and neighborhood complaints began to be heard almost daily.

The landscaped areas and the trash bins will become the responsibility of the City's Parks and Recreation department. However, Parks cannot take control of these areas until the contractor has finished his work. There were approximately 50 items on the punch list according to Assistant Parks Director, Joel McKnight.

Responding to my question whether Parks was slow to push for a completion of the project by the Accent Landscaping because of tightening budgets, Parks Director Nanette Smejkal said: "The operating budget isn't so much of an issue, but we do need to ensure that all contractual obligations have been met and the contractor is released from their obligations before City staff interject themselves onto the site for ongoing operations."

Ms. Smejkal now awaits a green light from the Engineering department that Accent has finally fulfilled their obligations.

Also, in the hood, El Paso Water Utilities/PSB have been working on cleaning up more culverts and ponding areas as part of their effort to improve stormwater management. I suggest that you take advantage of a Scenic Sunday when you can walk along Scenic Drive from 6 to 11 without traffic. You will see a number of ponds that have been cleaned up. The picture above was taken at the entrance to Scenic from Richmond Avenue. The detention pond on the other side of the dam has also been cleaned out and awaits some new gravel.

Bottom line: good things are going on in the hood.

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