Citizens learn about sewers, water service and a lot more.
Longboat Key residents learned initial planning is underway for a possible new recreation center and that the project to bury overhead wires will begin in late April.
The Feb. 6 presentation for residents enrolled in the Citizens Academy program featured Public Works, the town department responsible for everything from wastewater to streets to the beaches, and pretty much everything else that has a physical presence on the island.
Residents were told a recreation center is proposed, but planning is in its infancy, and there are no funds allocated. A new facility could cost roughly $6 million to $10 million, said Public Works Director Isaac Brownman.
The current center in Bayfront Park dates back to the mid-1980s and was donated to the town by Dr. Murray “Murf” Klauber, the former owner of the Colony Beach & Tennis Resort.
The $46 million-plus burial of town utilities is designed to improve electricity reliability, aesthetics, cellular and digital service and street lighting.
Project Manager James Linkogle said work will kick off on the north and south ends of the island and converge to the middle.
“We have a lot of moving parts to this,” said Linkogle, adding the project is slated to take 1,200 days to complete. “We have an aggressive schedule.”
Town officials have said there may be some power outages caused by the project, but assured residents they will be notified ahead of time.
“When we come to your neighborhood, we’ll give you plenty of notice,” he said.
Officials also talked about drinking water and waste water.
Brownman said Longboat uses 2 million gallons of water a day and generates 1.7 million gallons of wastewater daily.
“Our goal is to continue to use Manatee County water and wastewater,” Brownman said.
If there is an emergency, the town has an agreement in place with the city of Sarasota to provide water.
Public Works also is responsible for 18 miles of town roads, mowing of 15 acres, 167 street lights, as well as emptying 43 trash cans and 28 litter baskets twice a week.
The department is also responsible for maintaining 37,001 square feet of municipal buildings.