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Decatur City Commission approves agreement for sidewalk repairs

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Decatur City Commission approves agreement for sidewalk repairs

The Decatur City Commission approved a couple of items related to sidewalks and repairs during its regular meeting on Dec. 18, 2023, at City Hall. Pictured left to right: Mayor Pro Tem Tony Powers, Mayor Patti Garrett, City Manager Andrea Arnold and commissioners Kelly Walsh and George Dusenbury. Photo by Zoe Seiler.
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This story has been updated.

Decatur, GA — The Decatur City Commission, at its Dec. 18 regular meeting, approved an agreement with Georgia Safe Sidewalks for up to $53,000 for repairs to sidewalks throughout the city.

The sidewalk repairs are tentatively scheduled to begin in March. The work will take about eight days to complete.

“The City has previously employed Georgia Safe Sidewalks to repair vertical separations between sidewalk panels,” Assistant City Manager Cara Scharer said. “Georgia Safe Sidewalks utilizes a patented process and equipment to repair sidewalks and is the sole source provider in Georgia for this technology. The process cuts the sidewalk to a smooth slope, utilizes a dust collection system, and provides GPS points that can be integrated into our maintenance and repair database for GIS analysis and documentation.”

Here’s are the sidewalks that will be repaired:

Here’s a map showing the location of each planned repair, courtesy of Decaturish media partner Atlanta News First.

In other sidewalk news, the city commission established a project budget of $60,000 and awarded a contract to IMS Infrastructure Management Services in the amount of $50,475 for a pavement and sidewalk assessment. The assessment will look at about 60 centerline miles of residential streets and 82 miles of sidewalks.

“Deliverables include a pavement condition index scoring for all road pavement segments and sidewalk condition index for all collected sidewalk segments and ramps,” Scharer said.

In other business:

– The city commission approved an agreement with Musco Sports Lighting for $215,000 for athletic field lighting at Ebster Field, establish a project budget of $280,000 and approved an agreement with Georgia Power for $40,000 to install the electrical service needed for the lighting.

“This project includes conversion of Ebster Field from a natural to synthetic turf surface and installation of new LED athletic field lighting,” Capital Projects Manager Hugh Saxon wrote in a memo. “A project budget of $1.75 million has been approved in the FY 2023-24 city budget. An agreement was approved in November with Precision Turf and Breedlove Land Planning for design-build and other pre-construction services for the project. The athletic field lighting is being purchased separately from the field construction to save contractor fees.”

– The city commission approved an alcoholic beverage license for Green Ginger for the sale for consumption on premises of wine, beer and spirituous liquors. Green Ginger has a new owner. The new owner had to apply for a change in ownership on the alcoholic beverage license.

– Decatur will work with Arborguard Tree Specialists for maintenance of downtown street trees. The commission approved the agreement on Monday night.

“The services include selective pruning, fertilization and pest control for 420 trees at a cost of $33,120,” Saxon wrote in a memo.

– The city commission also approved additional items for the South Housing Village. The Decatur Housing Authority, the developer of the project, is working toward closing on the financing for phase one and are on track to close in January, City Manager Andrea Arnold said.

One of those items was a memorandum of agreement between DHA, DeKalb County and the Georgia State Historic Preservation Officer and the city signed on as a concurring party. The South Housing Village is funded partially through low-income housing tax credits, which subjects the project to a review under the National Historic Preservation Act.

“As a result of that review that’s been conducted, the SHPO, with the Historic Preservation Division at the Georgia Department of Community Affairs, DHA, and DeKalb County, have entered into a MOA that identifies the measures that will be taken by the housing authority to minimize the impact of the project on the surrounding historic resources,” Arnold said.

The housing authority asked the city to be a concurring party to express the city’s support of the MOA. The city also helped draft the MOA and the scope of the memorandum only applies to the South Housing Village project site.

In November, the city commission approved amendments to the intergovernmental agreement between the city and DHA that in part outlines the process for future recapitalization, which would happen when the housing authority would need to revitalize or renovate the development.

“Right now, the housing authority is financing a large amount of the project through low income housing tax credits. That’s going to get the project built and then at some point in the future, say 20 to 30 years out, most likely the development will need to be totally renovated,” Arnold previously told Decaturish. “Recapitalization is when the housing authority will need to reinvest or renovate the development.”

On Monday night, the commission approved a not-to-exceed amount of about $1.3 million related to the payment for capital expenditures. This is the maximum amount the city would reimburse the housing authority for capital expenditures if the city were to not extend the ground lease for the South Housing Village or if DHA were to end the ground lease.

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