By Rebecca Banks
The satisfaction rate for the maintenance of the city’s sidewalks and streets among residents has been declining in recent years.
According to the city’s 2015 Community Survey, the satisfaction rate in 2011 was about 40 percent and 30 percent in 2013.
Last year, about 20 percent of residents said they were satisfied with the maintenance of the streets and sidewalks in the city. An estimated 22 percent were neutral and 52 percent were dissatisfied with the current upkeep of the sidewalks and streets.
Last year, city council approved to allocate $200,000 to the department of transportation to fix gaps in sidewalks and areas that suffered cracks or other damages.
One of the areas the city has recently worked on is the sidewalk in front of Palm Springs Apartments on Thorpe Lane.
Avila says the transportation department’s improvements include removing and replacing the existing sidewalks in addition to connecting gaps in between the walkways.
“Let’s say you’re in an older neighborhood that has existing sidewalks but the sidewalks are broken and cracked and have trip hazards,” Avila said. “Part of our five year maintenance program we repair those sidewalks and construct new ones.”
Additionally the department will work to fill-in gaps of sidewalks in neighborhoods that do not have continuous concrete walkways on that block, Avila said.
“Other neighborhoods where houses were plated before sidewalks were required with construction of new houses, so subsequently you may have sidewalks along some houses and then you have a gap of sidewalk between and continues again with more sidewalk,” Avila said.
The sidewalk plan will continue to work on the city’s walkways through 2018. The city plans to improve 10,000 linear feet per year as part of the five-year initiative.