CHRIS DUQUE — Nederland outlines road and drainage upgrades & timelines

Published 12:55 am Saturday, October 2, 2021

The City of Nederland operates on an Oct. 1 through Sept. 30 fiscal year.

So, Oct. 1, 2021, was the start of a new year for the City.

Several major projects and improvements are programmed for the new year.

Nederland City Manager Chris Duque

Infrastructure

The City’s infrastructure is a constant focus. Over $11 million is allocated for street and drainage projects. This includes $3 million allocated for the 2021/2022 Street Program.

Currently, the first phase of work (2021-2022 Concrete Pavement Improvements project) is out for bid and scheduled for the City Council to award bid at the Oct. 25 meeting. The scope of work includes street repairs and drainage improvements on 30th Street (Nederland Ave to West Atlanta), concrete street repairs of Avenue H (S. 14th Street to S. 29th Street) and constructing a concrete parking area for Babe Ruth Park.

The City Council has engaged an engineering firm to begin design and developing bid specifications for the 2022 Flexible Pavement Rehabilitation project. The scope of work includes the “hot mix overlay” of Boston Avenue (railroad right-of-way to 9th Street), Hardy Avenue (Avenue A to Avenue H), 33rd Street (Hardy Ave to Avenue H), South 25th Street (Nederland Avenue to Avenue H), 9th Street (Helena to Nederland Avenue), 10th Street (Helena to Boston Avenue), and Beauxart Garden Road (Holmes Road to Shelly).

Later this year, the City will begin the design process for concrete street repairs of 21st Street (Detroit to Helena).

A number of other road projects will be selected by the City Council later this year.

In addition to these Street Improvement Funds, the City will complete $4.35 million in street, bridge and drainage improvements utilizing the 2021 Certificates of Obligation.

The first project was the widening of the 18th Street bridge at Canal, which was completed in August.

The City has begun several drainage studies to prepare for future projects. Utilizing Harvey Disaster Recovery Program funds ($4,259,659), drainage improvements will be completed in the Hilldale/Hill Terrace area and the areas near 3rd Street, Texas and 1st Street between Nederland Avenue and Boston Avenue.

Programmed infrastructure improvements includes completing two wastewater treatment plant improvement projects; these $2 million in upgrades are the first major improvements to the WWTP in over 20 years.

Utilizing Hazard Mitigation Grant funds, generators will be installed at four lift stations ($289,620), which will complete the generator installation project at all wastewater facilities.

Finally, the City plans to make sidewalk repairs and improvements near Highland Park Elementary, Hillcrest Elementary and Langham Elementary; the timing of this work depends on the NISD elementary campus bond project timeline.

Quality of life

The City’s quality of life is also prioritized. At the Marion & Ed Hughes Public Library, new carpeting will be installed, replacing the 15-year old carpet.

This project will likely impact services due to the building being closed to the public while bookshelves are rotated to allow the carpet removal/installation.

At Tex Ritter Park, landscaping improvements and electrical repairs are programmed.

At Cropo LeBlanc Park, funds are allocated to build a half-court basket court; lights will not be installed to avoid any play at night.

At 5th Street Park, funds are allocated for the installation of new playground equipment to replace the older equipment.

At Doornbos Park, funds are allocated to repair the concrete drive and the parking lot next to the swimming pool, to re-surface the tennis courts, and to install a new playground in the old sand volleyball court area. And at the Nederland Swimming Pool, funds are allocated to install new fencing around the waterslide and to re-surface the swimming pool deck.

The City is also exploring options to address the pond at Doornbos Park; any repairs will require engineering, which the Parks Department staff is exploring now.

The City’s Public Safety is also being addressed. The Nederland Police Department will gain a new position that will be assigned to the detective unit.

And the Nederland Fire Department will receive its new ladder truck this fall.

This past year was incredibly challenging. The City staff have done an incredible job navigating these challenges. I want to thank them for their continuing hard work and service.

Town hall

On Oct. 11 at 6 p.m., the City Manager will hold the fourth TOWN HALL meeting.

The Town Hall will be broadcast via the City’s Facebook page and will open to the public to attend in-person at City Hall.

We are asking any individuals entering City facilities to wear a mask.

The 2021 Hurricane Season is not over. Communication is vital during an emergency. Following Hurricane Nicholas, we confirmed the void in Nederland citizens who are not registered for notifications.

The City utilizes the Southeast Texas Alerting Network (STAN) and our social media pages to push emergency notices; this can include road closures, water shut-offs, garbage route rescheduling, etc.

If you have not already registered for STAN or have family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, etc. who have not already registered, please register for STAN at https://thestan.com or call 844-578-7826.

Also follow the City’s Facebook pages: “The City of Nederland, TX,” “Nederland Police Department,” “Nederland Fire Rescue,” “Nederland Recreation Center,” “Marion & Ed Hughes Public Library” and “Nederland Animal Shelter.”

The COVID-19 Delta variant continues to plague our region. The City is strongly urging all eligible individuals to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

The federal government, state government and leading medical experts all recommend vaccinations and recognize vaccination is the strongest tool to contain the pandemic.

Upcoming events

Citizens are urged to wear a mask, social distance, and practice sound hygiene practices as much as possible.

Finally, there are a number of upcoming community events: National Night Out Oct. 5 starting at 5:30 p.m. in front of the police and fire stations, Monsters In The Park Oct. 29 starting at 5 p.m. at Doornbos Park, the Nederland Chamber of Commerce’s Trunk-R-Treat on Oct. 31 on Boston Avenue, Christmas On The Avenue on Dec. 4 on Boston Avenue, and the Nederland Chamber of Commerce’s Lighted Christmas Parade Dec. 7.

The City is finalizing plans for a Veterans Day ceremony at Veterans Park.

The NEDC will be providing free concerts each Thursday night in October near the NHF office on Boston Avenue.

If there are any questions regarding City operations, please contact the City Manager’s Office at 409-723-1503.

Chris Duque is city manager for Nederland. He can be reached at CDuque@ci.nederland.tx.us.