$15 million earmarked for streets, sidewalks.


Byline: Nick Kotsopoulos

WORCESTER - City Manager Michael V. O'Brien has proposed a $15 million capital improvement spending plan for this fiscal year that focuses heavily on the maintenance of city streets and sidewalks.

Because of the city's fiscal situation and its declining revenues, the capital plan is $3 million less than the previous year's.

Mr. O'Brien said there is less available money for improvements to public buildings and the purchase of equipment and vehicles.

"Those kind of things are just going to have to be put off for now," the manager said. "The recommendations in this plan reflect the priorities of this community and seek to continue the necessary investment in an aging infrastructure."

Among the allocations in the capital improvement plan are:

$6.75 million for the repair and resurfacing of streets and sidewalks.

That funding will leverage an additional $3.05 million in Chapter 90 funds from the state and $9.45 million in state and federal Transportation Improvement Funds.

$1.8 million for the rehabilitation of public buildings.

When augmented by $1.6 million in funding from energy improvements, this budget will provide a total of $2.5 million in improvements for the public schools and $900,000 for improvements to other city facilities.

One of the items for repairs is the plaza deck behind City Hall and the underground parking garage there. The work will include waterproofing the deck, repairing the garage gates, and upgrading the electrical system.

On the school side, roof replacements are planned for Union Hill and May Street schools, as well as the field house at Foley Stadium. Boiler replacements are also planned for Union Hill and Worcester Arts Magnet schools, and $350,000 will be spent for the installation of grease inceptors at one third of all public schools, bringing them into compliance with new city codes.

$1.15 million...

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