Paul's Note - September 13, 2018

Finally, the day we have been waiting for: work on the dilapidated stretch of Broadway between Camino Seco and Houghton will start on Monday.

Many of you have noticed that there have been crews from the various utilities for a few months. They were moving their lines in preparation for the road work. There are always scheduling issues with this sort of work, and that’s what led to many of the delays.

Wednesday night we had a pre-construction open house to give everyone a preview of what the road will look like when it is done. As I’ve said in previous newsletters, much of the reason the road is in such bad shape is because of drainage issues. The most important improvement that they will be making is with the drainage crossings, as well as incorporating water harvesting. Water harvesting will not only keep water from eroding the pavement, but will irrigate an attractive landscape buffer while minimizing the use of drinking water.

The final project will widen Broadway to a four-lane, urban roadway (two travel lanes in each direction) with a curbed, landscaped median and a shoulder curb. There will also be 5-foot bike lanes in each direction and 6-foot sidewalks as well as a Bike/HAWK Signal at Gollob Road

Lighting will use the latest LED technology, which is safer for drivers and pedestrians as well as cuts down on light trespass for neighbors. Landscaping will use native plants.

The project is being funded by the Regional Transportation Authority with the City of Tucson managing it. As construction goes, please don’t hesitate to call my office with questions or you can also go to the project website, broadwayeast.info

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Last week, I posted Chief Chris Magnus’s report that his department and a number of local agencies had secured a grant for three-quarter of a million dollars to help with response for domestic violence victims. This week comes the news of another grant. This is from the Chief:

More good news associated with a grant that will have a positive and important impact on public safety in our community!

The Tucson Police Department has been awarded a grant in the amount of $235,014 from the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) as part of the “FY2018 DNA Capacity Enhancement and Backlog Reduction Program.”

The Tucson Police Department Crime Laboratory (TPDCL) has had a significant increase in submissions of evidence that require DNA analysis over the past few years.  This is a result of new departmental policies as well as a new Arizona state law involving the timely testing of sexual assault kits.

This grant will fund a full-time DNA Screener and a full-time DNA Criminalist in the TPDCL to continue to address the backlog of DNA cases associated with violent crime cases that need analysis.  The grant will also replace an aging quantitation instrument, critical for the work of the Crime Lab’s DNA Section, that handles a vital step of DNA analysis.

Finally, the grant provides overtime that will allow for additional analysis of 60 violent crime cases, further reducing backlog and improving turnaround times.

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Reid Park Zoological Society and the City of Tucson recently updated the 2014 Master Plan for the Reid Park Zoo with features authorized by voters last November. This process included input from City leadership, Zoo staff and members, Zoo board members, guests, and national experts in the zoological community. Presentations about the Master Plan for the general public are scheduled through next month. The next meeting is scheduled for 5 pm today, Sept. 12, at Reid Park Zoo Administration, 1100 S. Randolph Way, with another meeting on Oct. 3 at 5 p.m.

For more information, visit https://reidparkzoo.org/future/