Proposed Truckee assessment district receives support
August 7, 2013
TRUCKEE, Calif. — Results from an informal poll indicate a majority of Brickelltown property owners support forming an assessment district as part of the downtown area's proposed overhaul, officials said.
The Brickelltown project calls for streetscape improvements from the McIver Roundabout to the intersection of Spring and Jibboom streets, including burying utility lines, creating on-street parking and doing landscaping.
"Brickelltown is the next frontier to expand downtown Truckee and its critical mass," said Tony Lashbrook, town manager. "… (It's) to bolster downtown Truckee as the premier shopping, dining designation in the region."
A preliminary project cost estimate is $4.5 million, Lashbrook said.
Funding will come from $6.5 million in former Redevelopment Agency bond proceeds the California Department of Finance recently authorized the town to spend.
Before spending an estimated $600,000 on final project design, the town's Redevelopment Successor Agency has stipulated an assessment district be created to ensure a maintenance funding source for improvements and a high level of property owner support, according to the town.
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Based on results of the recent poll, staff will recommend that town council start the process of creating the district later this month, Lashbrook said.
In September, property owners within the proposed district would likely vote on whether to approve the district, said Jessica Thompson, town associate engineer.
As for what amount of voter approval will be needed to pass, she said that's still being decided.
Annual maintenance costs to maintain the upgrades depends on which of two project options is selected.
One option includes parking and landscape improvements to the south side of Donner Pass Road in the existing Union Pacific Railroad area. That has a price tag of $64,846 in annual maintenance costs, Thompson said.
The other option doesn't include those improvements and would cost $62,046 annually.
Funds collected by the assessment district through property taxes would fund sidewalk maintenance and utilities including snow removal, electricity for sidewalk lighting, water for landscape irrigation, sidewalk surface repairs, sidewalk cleaning and landscape maintenance, according to the town.
Cost to each property owner will vary based on square footage of improvements fronted by an owner's building and building size, Thompson said.
There are about 35 parcel owners within the proposed district.
To ensure costs are fairly distributed based upon final project design, a second vote among property owners would occur before construction begins.
The earliest construction can start is summer 2015, Lashbrook said, with work likely taking two years to complete.
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