For the City Times
Document Includes Request for Railroad Crossing Analysis
WISCONSIN RAPIDS — The City of Wisconsin Rapids 2018 Executive Budget has been completed and submitted to the City Council for consideration.
In accordance with State-imposed revenue limits, the proposed 2018 departmental operating budgets remain similar to those of 2017, maintaining existing service levels.
Budget highlights include:
Aquatic Center development: $2.5 million in borrowing is proposed to complete the $5 million pledged to the project in 2016. This will bring fundraising to 43 percent, with the balance to come from corporate, philanthropic and individual donations.
Alexander Field Airport: Despite continued infrastructure project investments requiring local matching funds, the local taxpayer subsidy from the four owner communities remains unchanged. The cost of infrastructure enhancements will be met as a result of new revenues from growing airport operations and associated fuel sales.
Centralia Center: Lowell Center Garden – Existing gardens are not user friendly for many patrons. Project support will also include association, individual and business donations. Parking lot – Now beyond its useful life, this lot will be redesigned with updated pedestrian accommodations, a relocated entrance and improved traffic flow, making it much safer.
McMillan Memorial Library: The budget provides capital to support a complete remodel of the heavily utilized main floor men’s and women’s restrooms, and the addition of a family restroom.
Notable Public Works Construction Projects include: High St. between Seventh and 10th Avenues, and between 12th and 17th Avenues; Van Buren between Eighth and 10th Avenues; Riverview Expressway/Lincoln Street/Daly Street traffic control improvements to fulfill agreement terms with Kwik Trip, and to address traffic concerns at Daly St.; and long-desired sidewalks on 10th St. (East side) between Wood and Grove, servicing many apartment complexes.
Railroad Crossing Analysis: Railroad crossings at Chase Street and West Grand Avenue experience extended blockages weekly – and, at times, daily – disrupting motorist travel, business operations and our overall quality of life. I propose allocating funds to analyze this situation and explore alternatives to improve the flow of traffic. I would suggest that the scope also consider quiet/no-whistle enhancements on west-side crossings.
“I am proud to present a budget that maintains all the municipal services our residents enjoy, while also funding various quality-of-life initiatives such as analyzing the disruption at our railroad crossings, and the city’s commitment to a regional aquatic and activity center,” said Mayor Zach Vruwink. “Our administration continues its commitment to meeting both the short-term and future needs of our citizens.”