West U mayor outlines key investments in 2023 in drainage, software, water systems

During the annual State of the City address on Jan. 12, West University Place Mayor Susan Sample shared plans for the city in 2023, including improvements to a variety of projects in the drainage, software and water systems.

During the address, Sample emphasized the importance of keeping residents informed about projects throughout the year through various communication efforts. She cited the council’s approval of a “comprehensive financial management policy” at a January 9 meeting, which she said “consolidates all of our financial projects into one document that residents, staff and council can look forward to to get answers”.

“We’ve taken steps to be more transparent,” Sample said.

To improve the overall security of its financial software and technology systems, the city will phase out its 15-year-old software and technology systems and upgrade with a more “robust” platform, Sample said.

“This is the first of many phases in updating our aging software platform to ensure our system is not lacking in service,” said Sample.

Other significant investments include the estimated $15.8 million in construction costs for the east side drainage improvement as part of the citywide drainage improvement project, which was split into two plans shared by Poor Farm Ditch.

The city will also spend an estimated $17.4 million to build West University’s wastewater treatment plant. Sanitary sewer improvements include building a raised office building, upgrading equipment, and making the facility flood resistant.

An older 1950s water main is being replaced and upgraded along Milton Street and will cost nearly $3.4 million, with more than half of the project’s cost being funded by a federal grant.

Other projects referenced by Example included road and sidewalk repairs and the replacement of the Bellaire elevated tank.

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