Topping the list of priorities for the suburban community in 2020 are a groundbreaking on Fire Station No. 4, new road construction and the unveiling of the Coppell Arts Center.
The road projects and new city facilities come as Coppell’s population nears 42,000 residents, about 3,000 shy of the city’s maximum capacity, Coppell Mayor Karen Hunt said.
Hunt, along with local industry partners and city officials, detailed plans for the city’s future at the annual state-of-the-city event Jan. 23.
Recent work highlighted during the address included major reconstruction projects on Freeport Parkway and Parkway Boulevard. Those projects are expected to be completed this spring, according to Public Works Director Kent Collins.
Other key accomplishments in 2019 included the replacement of 13,400 city water meters and the opening of a new connector into Irving’s 19-mile Campion Trail.
“As we [look] back at 2019, there was a lot of great things that happened,” Hunt said in a prepared video presentation. “We finalized some of the initiatives from our 2030 plan, and we started implementing the citizen vision for 2040.”
Here are more details about the city’s top projects.
Station set to fill gaps
The Coppell Fire Department is getting big upgrades in the form of a fourth fire station and three new fire engines.
Coppell City Council approved a maximum cost of $8.4 million for the new fire station at a Nov. 12 meeting. A groundbreaking for the new facility took place Jan. 28 at 440 Northpoint Drive, Coppell.
“This addition is the result of years of growth,” Coppell Fire Department Chief Kevin Richardson said. “The city of Coppell hasn’t added a fire station in over 25 years. ... [Fire Station No. 4] is going to primarily serve the west side, which is our industrial district.”
The new station will not only improve the fire department’s response times but also provide economic benefits for nearby businesses, he said.
“It also helps maintain that the commercial side of the city receives the lowest possible insurance rates regarding fire safety,” Richardson said. “So without [the new station] over there, their insurance rates [would] have the potential to go higher.”
Council has also approved spending $2.3 million to purchase three new fire engines. Purchasing the vehicles at the same time saves the city about $211,000 in discounts, Richardson said.
Road work rolls onward
While major reconstruction efforts on Parkway Boulevard and Freeport Parkway are slated to be complete this year, more road projects are on the way.
Resolving both northbound and southbound congestion remains one of the city’s top challenges, Hunt said.
“We only have so many lanes of traffic,” she said. “If we add one more, guess what? They just fill ... up. ... Figuring out ways to help that traffic move through town—that’s a big deal.”
Coppell will soon undertake two additional road reconstruction projects, according to Collins, the public works director. A $7 million Airline Drive reconstruction project spanning from Freeport Parkway to Belt Line Road is expected to begin early this year.
A $24 million reconstruction project on Belt Line Road spanning from Denton Tap Road to I-635 is expected begin in 2021, Collins said.
Arts Center coming
The Coppell Arts Center’s opening will serve as one of the final installations in Old Town Coppell.
Scheduled for a May 14-17 opening, the arts center will include a 440-seat main hall, a 196-seat black box theater, a VIP lounge, a reception hall, an outdoor stage and much more.
“When it comes to entertainment and culture, [the arts center] will be a brand new feature that will be added to this great portfolio that [the] parks and [recreation department] has already taken care of,” arts center Managing Director Alex Hargis said at the address.The center will house five of the city’s arts organizations: Theatre Coppell, Coppell Community Chorale, Coppell Community Orchestra, Ballet Ensemble of Texas and Coppell Creatives.