Due to COVID-19 pandemic BY DORIS B. TRUHLARGOVERNMENTAL REPORTER The City of Centennial has cut back on its s...
BY DORIS B. TRUHLARGOVERNMENTAL REPORTER An arts formation committee is being created through th e efforts of...
BY DORIS B. TRUHLARGOVERNMENTAL REPORTER The 2020 edition of the Model Traffic Code was discussed by the Cente...
BY DORIS B. TRUHLARGOVERNMENTAL REPORTER In the last 12 years, the City of Centennial has invested a total of...
BY DORIS B. TRUHLARGOVERNMENTAL REPORTER A traffic light will be installed this year at the intersection of So...
BY DORIS B. TRUHLARGOVERNMENTAL REPORTER The Jones District, a planned $1.8 billion mixed-use development, is...
BY DORIS B. TRUHLARGOVERNMENTAL REPORTER Centennial City Council has approved a contract for the design of a17...
BY DORIS B. TRUHLARGOVERNMENTAL REPORTER The Centennial City Council, at a meeting earlier this week, heard a...
BY DORIS B. TRUHLARGOVERNMENTAL REPORTER Centennial City Attorney Robert Widner made a presentation to the Cit...
BY DORIS TRUHLARGOVERNMENTAL REPORTER The Centennial city council Monday night selected Mike Sutherland, a cou...
Due to COVID-19 pandemic
BY DORIS B. TRUHLARGOVERNMENTAL REPORTER
The City of Centennial has cut back on its services. This is already effective.
The reason for the cutbacks is to minimize exposure, as has been requested by public health officials, due to the covid-19 pandemic. Essential services (for example, law enforcement, snow and ice issues, road repairs and signal light maintenance) will continue to be provided but could be on a delayed schedule.
The Building Division will not be conducting inspections on the interior of a home or basement. Examples are furnaces, water heaters, basement finishes and interior remodels.
Inspections for new construction and for exterior projects such as a new roof, deck or gazebo, as well as similar projects, will occur as usual, although they could be delayed.
Exceptions and emergencies will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, which a city spokeswoman said was to ensure public health and safety.
Animal Services is responding to emergency only calls within the community. Examples are rabid animals, including both domestic pets and wild animals.
Additionally, Centennial Center Park is closed until further notice to assist in helping residents community “embrace social distancing practice,” according to a city spokeswoman.
The City continues to closely monitor the COVID-19 pandemic and take the appropriate precautions recommended by Tri-County Health and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE). For questions please use the City’s website to report a problem or call the City’s 24-hr Citizen Response Center at 303-325-8000.
Call volumes may become heavy, and the city has asked for the patience of its residents. For resources and additional information about COVID-19, the city requests that residents and others seeking information visit centennial
An arts formation committee is being created through th e efforts of the City of Centennial, according to a report made to the City Council on Monday night by Assistant City Attorney Maureen Juran.
The entity is likely to be called the Centennial Arts and Cultural Foundation. A group started meeting in October of last year. It likely will have a membership of seven, including two members of the City Council.
The board will have as an initial task figuring out how to raise money. Councilwoman Candace Moon commented that there has been an interest in art in the city.
Moon also said that the Centennial Youth Commission recently met with the Lone Tree Youth Commission.
In another, unrelated matter, a citizen, Stefan Kazmierski, urged the council to ban single-use plastic bags, as they are harmful to the environment. Kazmierski cited an ordinance in the City of Denver as an example of a measure banning single-use bags.
The meeting also included reports from law enforcement personnel. Arapahoe County Sheriff Tyler Brown said his department, with which Centennial has a contract for law enforcement services, is still taking applications for its Citizens Academy.
Fire Chief Jerry Rhodes, with the South Suburban Fire Rescue Department, said that his department will accept applications for its next class of recruits until March 16. Additionally, South Suburban is taking applications from individuals who are 18 years old, down three years from its prior requirement. The South Suburban Citizens Academy is already full for this year.
Rhodes said that elections for the South Suburban Fire Rescue Board of Directors will be in May of this year, with four openings on the seven-member board.
The 2020 edition of the Model Traffic Code was discussed by the Centennial City Council at a study session prior to its Monday meeting. The new code will be on the agenda at a future meeting of the council, likely within the next few weeks. It is highly likely the code will be adopted by the city.
Numerous cities in Colorado have adopted the uniform rules of the road, which also includes vehicle requirements. The current version of the model code, which will be replaced by the 2020 version, is the 2003 edition.
One major amendment includes two sections that make it a traffic infraction for anyone to pass an authorized snowplow that is performing its services in a formation in which snowplows are arranged diagonally, with each unit stationed behind and either to the right or left of the unit in front of it.
Another is a section allowing a driver of a motorcycle to treat an inoperative traffic signal as a stop sign. This is because motorcycles do not generally weigh enough to trigger many traffic lights.
In other business, the council heard a report from Jill Hassman, Assistant City Attorney, and Michael Gradis, planner, about variances. They said there are two to three variance requests annually.
Variances must not have a negative impact on the larger community, and may not be detrimental to public health, safety and welfare. Additionally, there must be no other relief available, no legal option, except for a variance. The city’s Planning and Zoning Commission unanimously approved new rules about variances.
In other unrelated business, the council received a letter from City Attorney Robert Widner, seeking “limited consent” from the council for the Attorneys in the office of Widner Juran LLP to consult with outside attorneys in regard to legal matters.
The letter from Widner stated that benefits to allowing the firm to utilize outside law firms could be “reduced expense for the City or simplified legal response preparation” for Widner Juran.
The information disclosed to the outside lawyers would be limited “to that reasonably necessary to carry out the purpose of the consultation . . .”
In the last 12 years, the City of Centennial has invested a total of $78 million in its streets network, with 2017 being the most expensive year, with a total of $10.4 million in improvements.
The Centennial City Council learned about the costs of public works projects at a recent meeting, when Public Works Department employees reported numerous facts to the council. Presenters included Deputy City Manager Elisha Thomas, and Public Works Department personnel Craig Fassler, Jeff Dankenbring and Mike Nelson. Some of the more interesting portions of the report the council heard are listed here:
There are more than 778 miles of sidewalks in the City of Centennial.
Centennial has 4,000 street markers, and they are inspected annually.
Homeowners all have an easement across the front of their properties (a strip of land adjacent to the street). The easement gives the city a right to use the area of the easement for utilities. Homeowners are required to maintain the easement area. Some properties have an additional easement across the interior of their property.
There are a total of 123,342 square feet in crosswalks in the city.
More than 26,000 telephone calls annually come into the city’s call center, which is staffed every day, all day. The call center answers a variety of inquiries. This is an average of 2,170 calls or web requests each month. The number for the call center is (303) 325-8000.
There are a total 23,165 traffic signs in Centennial.
Street sweeping in Centennial takes place three times annually, spring, summer and fall. There is no sweeping in the winter due to snow and cold weather.
Right-of-way permits are required for any activity that takes place in the public right-of-way, including dumpsters utilized for remodeling projects. There were 810 right-of-way permits issued in 2019. When a water main is being replaced, a right-of-way permit must be issued.
The city’s policy is to maintain the network of streets in at least “good” condition. Condition is measured, from the best to the worst, as excellent, very good, good, fair, marginal, poor or very poor.
A survey of the pavement condition is made every three years at a cost of $180,000.
A traffic light will be installed this year at the intersection of South Himalaya Street and South Gibraltar Way.
The preliminary work that will be done, probably prior to the installation of the light, will be the undergrounding of electric wires near the intersection.
The lines to be moved underground are running along South Himalaya north of East Smoky Hill Road. The work will be performed by Intermountain Rural Electric Association, which has estimated the work to cost $548,969.
The Centennial City Council recently approved having City Manager Matt Sturgeon agree to the contract with IREA. The City Manager generally is allowed to approve public works contracts up to $300,000. The council approved Sturgeon signing the contract with IREA.
The intersection currently does not have a signal. There is no timeline for completion of the undergrounding. Once started, it is estimated to take about three weeks to complete. The project is estimated to start this spring.
The Jones District, a planned $1.8 billion mixed-use development, is proposing an estimated $40 to $50 million in new public and public-related improvements. The district is on about 40 acres adjacent to the East Dry Creek light rail station and Interstate 25.
There will be a City Council vote on creation of five metropolitan districts at the council meeting on February 10. It is anticipated that it is likely the vote of the council will permit the proposed development and the creation of the metropolitan districts, also called “metro districts.”
Metro districts are used in Colorado, and specifically in the area south of Denver, including Park Meadows, Landmark and Fiddlers Green. They generally are for mixed-use developments.
At a recent council meeting, a council member asked whether the City could be responsible for debt incurred by any of the special districts. Plans call for five special districts, with four of them having taxing authority and the fifth being supervisory of the other four. The response by city staff was that Centennial could not be responsible for the debts of the district.
Making the presentation about the Jones District to the council were Steve Greer, the Community Development director for the city, and also Neil Marciniak, Economic Development Director.
The districts will have the ability to add a Public Improvement Fee to the cost of the improvements. It is somewhat similar to a sales tax, which also can be added to the fees.
If the Centennial City Council approves the districts in February, then owners of the district will begin forming the districts immediately, including holding an election for each district in May of this year. Each governing board of the districts will have five members.
Improvements in the Jones District will include roads, traffic signals and public space, as well as water and sewer infrastructure. The taxing rate for the districts will be more than 22 mills. Colorado law allows up to a 50-mill levy.
Centennial City Council has approved a contract for the design of a17-mile east-west trail connection that will go across the entire city. The cost for design is not to exceed $500,000.
The corporation that will perform the design work for the trail is Felsburg Holt & Ullevig, Inc. Total distance of the trail will be 17.29 miles. The trail will run along eight parks and two recreation centers, as well as three schools. About four and one-half miles will be on city streets.
A purpose of the trail is to provide a safe, continuous bicycle and pedestrian route from east to west. It will utilize existing infrastructure, including the High Line Canal, Little Dry Creek Trail and Piney Creek Trail.
There will be new trail construction, expansion of some existing trails and sidewalks. It is anticipated that there will be some new concrete trail that will, where possible, be ten feet wide.
The project will include a trail-naming project to allow residents to have input on the name of the trail.
There will be some lane modification to allow for bicycle crossings in areas of heavy traffic flow. The project likely will need to be coordinated with the City of Greenwood Village, as some of the trail will go through that municipality.
The Centennial City Council, at a meeting earlier this week, heard a presentation by the City’s Principal Planner Jenny Houlne regarding further extensive development of the Centennial Center Park, which is just to the east of Centennial Civic Building.
The cost of the further development is estimated to be $5.4 million over the next three years. Houlne explained that the Arapahoe County Open Space Fund can be used to pay for open space and trail projects, which will be built in cooperation with South Suburban Parks and Recreation District.
A private company, Design Workshop, Inc., has assisted Centennial in developing a park plan adopted by the Planning and Zoning Commission on May 8, 2019, and approved by the Council on May 20, 2019.
The city and the Arapahoe County Board of County Commissioners entered into an Intergovernmental Agreement in 2004 that entitles Centennial to use Open Space Sales and Use Tax, known as “Shareback Funds,” for development of the park. That agreement was amended in 2012, with the amendment providing for an additional 10 years to be added to the Shareback Funds Agreement. The Shareback Funds Agreement will now extend until 2023.
Houlne said Centennial’s Open Space Advisory Board annually reviews and recommends projects to be funded by the Shareback Funds.
There will be three phases to the project. Plans for Phase 1 of the project call for an extended parking lot with a drop-off area to be built. In addition, Phase 1 will also include additional restrooms and a sledding hill. Plans are for Phase 1 to be designed in 2020 and built in 2021.
Phase 2 will include a community pavilion and is anticipated to be built in 2022. Phase 3 will include a garden path with landscaping, picnic area, and a multi-purpose lawn and is anticipated to be built in 2023. A Request for Proposals will go out later this month, followed by the selection of a consultant to oversee the project.
The planning also will include decisions on placement of trees in the park. Houlne said that the city hopes to start designing Phases 2 and 3 later this year.
The city staff met with the council in October 2018, in regard to plans for the expansion of the park, which has won awards for its innovation. The city tallied more than 300 responses to an online survey regarding the improvements to the park.
The Shareback Funds are distributed annually on or before June of each year. Centennial received about $2.9 million in Arapahoe County Shareback Funds for 2019.
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