TwosDay attendance quadruple what expected; engineers propose plan for housing

By Joel Phelps
Photos by Mike Meeks

Those responsible for the planning of the recent TwosDay event expected around 300 people to show up, but instead some 1,500 people braved the cold to enjoy the downtown Arkadelphia event of food trucks, live music and margaritas.

Spearheaded by city employees Julie Lacy and Emma Milner, the event was a success, said City Manager Gary Brinkley in his report Tuesday to the Arkadelphia City Board of Directors. Asked later when the next city-hosted event will take place, Brinkley told the board there are more “in the pipeline. We’ll surprise you in a little while.”

Brinkley also informed directors the city officially owns 1.5 acres in the Clark County Industrial Park for the future Arkadelphia Water Utilities-Gum Springs Maintenance Facility. The bids on that project are to be received March 22, with a board decision at its meeting on April 5.

Town Hall officials are slated to meet next week with contractors and engineers to discuss the pre-construction phase of the Feaster Trail rehabilitation project that will repair the portion from 26th Street toward the hospital.

City staff got their hands on a proposed engineering plan on Tuesday for the Northridge Estates subdivision. “This is the next major step in the approval process for the development” of that project, Brinkley said, noting that staff will soon return with feedback for the board.

AWU is in the process of pricing the expansion of water and sewer services to the south end of the Economic Development Corp. of Clark County’s 1,000-acre “Super Site.” Brinkley pointed out that the EDCCC has a prospective industry that would need those services. Economic development officials announced at the most recent EDCCC meeting that Project “Innovex”, which deals in the fracking industry, is the prospect wanting utilities. If completed, Brinkley said, this project would be among other assets for EDCCC to use in recruiting prospects to the Super Site.

The city met with officials from the Arkansas Department of Transportation in late February regarding the upcoming traffic signal at West Pine Street and Professional Park Drive. “All the parts have been ordered and the contractor is waiting for their delivery to begin,” Brinkley said, adding work on that project is expected to begin in about 60 days.

The Building Department is still working to finalize its online permit process. Brinkley admitted the project has “been more tedious than originally thought” because of “antiquated internal systems and procedures.”

Brinkley congratulated Director Chris Porter for finishing second place in the American Cornhole League’s Kansas City Open senior singles tournament.

Brinkley reminded the board that the annual Arkadelphia Area Chamber of Commerce Banquet will be March 17 at Henderson State University; a joint workshop between the City Board and Water Committee will follow the March 15 meeting; and some members of city staff will be attending the Arkansas Municipal League meetings in Little Rock later this month.

During Tuesday’s meeting, directors accepted a $55,300 bid from Adair Construction to install a driveway at Arkadelphia Fire Department Station 1 at the site of the now-razed Democratic Party building. Director Keith Crews requested to see engineering drawings of that project.

Directors also gave staff the go-ahead to destroy a list of dated documents. Those documents will be on display at Town Hall for 30 days prior to their being destroyed. Director Taylor Chaney inquired whether it would be possible to digitize documents going forward. Brinkley said he’d like to “get to that point” but isn’t there yet.

Following the meeting, Milner addressed the board regarding the countywide emergency alert system that was launched Tuesday. To enroll in the free system, text CLARK to 78015 (not case-sensitive; location services should be enabled on mobile devices).

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