The city of Franklin is considering delaying four different capital improvement projects based on priority rankings from the Board of Mayor and Aldermen after a presentation from City Administrator Eric Stuckey was given to the board at its May 26 work session.
“What staff has done since we hit the economic slowdown related to the COVID-19 pandemic was to re-examine these [projects] and give you a sense of where we think those projects are,” Stuckey told the board. “We need to be prudent as we move forward, but we want to keep high-priority projects still progressing.”
The projects slated for delay amount to $162,794 in estimated funds needed to move them forward in fiscal year 2020-21 and include the restoration off the Hayes home at Harlinsdale, the creation of a greenway from Pinkerton Park to the Franklin Road bridge, improvements to Carlisle Lane, and improvements to the intersection of Peytonsville Road and Pratt Lane.
Though these projects were flagged for deferral by city staff, Stuckey said the city would continue to look for additional ways to fund these projects including using grants, trying to find private funding or looking for private development to help drive the projects.
Stuckey said 11 other capital projects requiring an additional $9.16 million in funding for FY 2020-21 were looked at to “bring [them] to a certain stage, and then make a determination about whether to proceed into construction, whether to phase the project differently or whether to defer it further.”
Despite the potential delays and economic downturn from the coronavirus pandemic, the majority of capital improvement projects are still given the green light to move forward by the city, including the construction of a new fire station, improvements to the roundabout at East McEwen Drive, improvements to Franklin Road and additional lighting at the Goose Creek interchange.
“I compliment the staff on this work,” Mayor Ken Moore said. “We can’t just stop. We have to move forward ... and continue to build the infrastructure that our city is going to need in the future.”