By Ernie Over, managing editor, county10.com
(Riverton, Wyo.) – Putting the money where the need is. That’s the goal of the City of Riverton if the optional one cent Fix Our Roads tax issue passes in the November election. That was also the goal of a Riverton City Council Town Hall/Work Session Tuesday night at City Hall.
Armed with small bags of coins, Riverton’s Neighborhood Captains and members of the public placed their money on what they felt were the streets most in need of repair and/or replacement from a list of some 21 nominated streets and neighborhoods. The finalist streets came from around 60 routes that were nominated citywide by neighborhood residents in a citywide survey earlier this summer.
At the conclusion of the evening, five street segments and one neighborhood emerged with the most coins. They were:
#1 – North Broadway from Sunset to Teter Park.
#2 – The neighborhood around the new Aspen Park Elementary School with the primary route being North 16th East from East Park to Webbwood.
#3 – Pure Gas Road.
#4 – North 4th West and North 5th West adjacent to the Rendezvous School.
#5 – East Pershing from North Federal to the east.
#6 – Sunset from North 8th West to Broadway.
Mayor Ron Warpness and Public Works Director Bill Urbigkit said the input received Tuesday night would help the city prioritize the projects to be funded if the Fix Our Roads measure is approved by voters. “It’s really important that you, as citizens, be there and are involved in this process. We are dead serious and we want your input,” Warpness said, “we want these priorities not coming from us but from you.”
Warpness said the Riverton Police Department was also asked to rate the city’s streets, “since they are out there and driving on all the streets all the time.” The RPD’s list included several mentioned above plus the A&T mobile home park neighborhood, Hursh Street adjacent to the Alcohol Crisis Center, and Railroad Avenue from Monroe south to the Wind River.
Railroad is actually not a dedicated city street, Urbigkit said, but rather a series of easements among the landowners there, “It’s not on a public right of way,” he said. “We’d have to talk to those land owners and form an improvement district and build it as an industrial road and then we (the city) can take over maintenance. But right now, it’s not a city street,” he said
Urbigkit said he plans to utilize roto-milled asphalt that is removed from North Federal when that project is undertaken, and asphalt removed from other street projects to use in areas where gravel streets or alleys now exist, such as the A&T neighborhood. “We’ve had a lot of good luck working with recycled asphalt and it’s a great way to re use that material,” he said.
Other high priority streets that were nominated for work, but that did not score the most coins Tuesday include:
• South 4th West from Adams to Monroe
• Sunset from Forest Drive to the east
• East Monroe from Peak to Broadway
• East Park from Broadway to Federal
• Smith Road
• Adams from South 4th West to Federal
• West Park from North 8th West to North 5th West
• North 1st from Sunset to Lincoln
• Riverview from Spire to Majors
• North 8th West from West Park to West Main
• North 9th West from West Park to West Main
• Gannett Drive
Nominated for a chip seal at Tuesday’s meeting is what Urbigkit said city workers refer to as the “animal kingdom,” or Moose, Elk and Bighorn streets north of Sunset. Also nominated was the alley behind Rocky Mountain Sports, which Urbigkit said would become important as North Federal is rebuilt.
Mayor Warpness said a neighborhood captain who was unable to attend Tuesday’s session submitted a letter with several nominated streets, including Liberty and Independence streets, located behind the UPS facility north of Sunset.
The city council will take the information gathered at Tuesday’s meeting into consideration when developing a formal priority list for the street repairs.