A new five-year capital improvement plan will aim to address the town’s infrastructure need and position the town for the future, but Southington Town Council Chairman John Dobbins and Garry Brumback said public input and participation will be crucial in the plan’s success.
The plan, which includes , over $1 million in parks repairs and the recent addition of bonding for the installation of synthetic turf at l, was released last week and the council will ask the public to provide a critique during the next council meeting on July 9.
Editors Note: A public hearing will be held on the bond ordinance on June 25.
“This is a large undertaking and it will be important over the next five years to really get a plan in place that we can implement in order to maintain and improve deteriorating parts of the infrastructure,” Dobbins said. “This is just a start though. We need the public’s support to accomplish these goals long-term and to do that, we first need their input.”
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The plan hinges on long-term infrastructure upgrades, including the spending of $11 million on roads over the next five years. This represents an increase of nearly five times what the town has spent in in the past for such repairs, but Brumback said these costs are necessary to get the town moving in the right direction.
A study completed earlier this year concluded that roads had been neglected to a point that it would cost $50 million to bring back the entire road system to current standards and $45 million over the next decade to maintain costs where they are now.
“Roads are our highest priority because in the long-term, this is the type of investment in the town that we can’t afford not to maintain,” Brumback said. “We have a wonderful infrastructure in place and the town needs to focus on maintaining it.”
The latest document also contains a long-range plan that puts priority and proposed spending on everything that the town would like to see done. Brumback and Dobbins both warned that it is “a fluid document,” however, and could change.
Brumback said the town would also continue to adjust and add to the document each year and said it will be impossible to tackle everything, so priority ratings will remain important in the process.
“There just will never be enough money to get it all done, so what we need is a collaboration with professional staff and elected officials,” he said. “This is a living document and not something etched in concrete. It’s designed so that as needs change and priorities shift, we can adapt.”
See the complete plan in the PDF above.
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