Here is a letter from Franklin Alderman Beverly Burger to Franklin TN residents, submitted by a Cool Springs homeowner:
“There is really good news for McEwen.
Just over a week ago the Aldermen ranked the Capital Investment Projects (CIP).
Here are the Top Three:
McEwen Phase III
Tonight we voted to adopt the 2010-2014 Capital Investment Projects list that we (the Aldermen) re-evaluated this past month. This included scenario # Seven which included these three top projects.
So what does that mean? It means we will go out to bid very soon for the McEwen Phase III construction. That should happen before the end of the year and then it should get started before the end of the year as well- I hope. It is definitely the next one to fund since it is shovel ready for construction.
The developer (The Principals Group) at the corner of Cool Springs and Oxford Glen and McEwen, has done a lot of work already for us in the preparation of that area where the road will come into the roundabout near the fire station. So that should help in the timeline of it all. This project is shovel ready and as I said, it got adopted tonight as one of the top three that we will be doing. Let’s just hope it is like the Columbia Ave. bid and comes back in a lot lower. If it does then we can knock out additional projects and move along with (Phase IV of McEwen) a lot sooner. I am going to push for the bid and then the funding these next two months. Remember the Aldermen placed it in the top three and the vote tonight says we will fund it.
In addition, Columbia Ave.’s bid for $2.6 M was approved tonight so that approval is finished and they will begin work in the next few weeks. By the way, this was originally estimated to be close to $5M and it came back to us at $2.6 M. Amazing.
Plus we think we are going to get some money from Build America Bonds (for re-development areas), which could reduce it about another $1Million, bringing it in at around $1.6 Million. This is unheard of, so this was a no-brainer to fund. It WILL not take away the opportunity for McEwen and in fact this low bid and Build America Bonds will allow us to free up more dollars to put into McEwen. Construction costs are really low right now and so are our interest rates. We have to strike as many projects as possible right NOW while the iron is hot. This area (Columbia Ave.) is about re-development and we have much going on there that will bring back revenues to the city. I am always looking for ways to bring additional revenues to the city as that helps us to move ahead on other projects like McEwen and it also helps us to NOT raise taxes.
Hillsboro Road is listed as number one and it was approved tonight in the top three as well. So it should be coming to us for voting on funding the Design work. We have flooding in that area and rotted piping underground, etc. We have got to get the design work done, then the right of way and then it will go out to bid for construction. This will take some years, but we will look first to fund the design work.
NOW WHAT YOU ALL WANT TO HEAR!!!
McEwen Phase IV.
Well miracles do happen. THANKS to your communications and my lobbying the Aldermen and having them drive down the road (again and again) it all has paid off. McEwen Phase IV from Oxford Glen /Cool Springs at McEwen to Wilson Pike went from item number #47 on the CIP list to #7. That is a miracle!! We do have the preliminary design done which does not amount to a whole lot at this point, but it is done. So what’s next? We need to see about funding the Design. I suspect once the design gets funded (there is no time line at this point, but it is # 7 now instead of #47) it will take about 18 months to finish the design as it has tohave retaining walls, etc. along the way.
If I’m voted in for a second term (by-the-way, people have got to get out to vote and vote EARLY) then I will be in the face, so to speak, of the Aldermen and keep it before them and get the design funded as soon as possible. If our top CIP #1 and # 3 come back in with lower bids (like 30% or more lower) then we will be able to move McEwen Phase IV up even quicker.
I was working with our City Administrator to put into place a process to challenge the current manner and progression of these projects (including McEwen Phase IV) and develop a comprehensive plan that addresses road projects from an “integrated perspective” rather than the current “piecemeal” approach. Meaning, to put McEwen IV on a time line both on the schedule calendar and funding calendars. That way we know we have committed to it on our CIP list and committed to fund each phase as it is ready rather than leaving it sit on a list. With this vote tonight on the top three projects that mechanism is now in place and this approach will be used on McEwen Phase IV as it was used on these first three projects.
Just remember that just because a road project is listed in the #7 slot does not mean we have to do # 4, 5, and 6 before it. Assuming I am re-elected I WILL BE pushing this forward at each and ever meeting. I want to be able to get the design worked funded and get that going. I will know better how this will all play out after we get the bids back for the McEwen Phase III.
Now to be totally honest, I have a lot of work to do, but it will only happen if I am in for another term. A new person will have to go back to the drawing board for sure. Plus I have worked to build working relationships with the other Aldermen, the Mayor and the City staff and Administration as well as people at the State level. You all can count on me to keep this aggressively moving. But be ready as we will have more meetings coming up and I fully intend to keep my website up and re-arrange it once elections are over so I can address and up- date you all on Ward 1 issues and projects. McEwen will be the highlighted issue on that site.
I will also establish a means to post what is coming up on our agenda so people in Ward 1 can read about the issues, become fully informed and then give me their votes on various issues. I am excited about this as it will be a great communications tool for Ward 1 citizens and a better way for me to hear from my constituents.
Hope this gives you all the info you need on the McEwen up-date and encourages you all. In the mean time, I am still looking for ways to help improve McEwen Phase IV while we all still have to drive on it. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Just email me at Bev@AldermanBurger.com
One last think I want to say is voting is coming up. It is hard to get people out to Vote in these Ward elections because that’s all that is on the ballot. So each and every vote counts. Two elections ago two candidates tied. PLEASE go vote, I ask for your Vote and I ask that you VOTE EARLY. I am fully committed to getting McEwen Phase III done and getting McEwen Phase IV moved through the process and then built to completion as soon as possible and NOT five, six or seven years down the road!
I am happy to come and meet with the residents of Avalon whenever you like and if you would like me to come and share more information before or after the election then just let me know where and when. I am always available by email or phone.
Please read my website at www.AldermanBurger.com and contact me should you have any questions or concerns.
Thanks and I am glad I could share with you the good news about McEwen Drive. I would have liked to have seen McEwen Drive (Phase III and IV) as #1 and # 3, on the list but after McEwen Phase IV being in the 47th place and getting moved up into our top 10 ( at #7) I am thrilled. When we are asked to re-adjust or re-rank them again next year, I am hoping McEwen IV gets moved up even further on the list. I am very hopeful as now we actually have a reasonable slot number we can work with and move forward.
Re-Elect Alderman Beverly Burger
Ward 1, City of Franklin, TN