Better Streets, Safer City update: 119 resurfaced street miles in 2020Published: Wednesday, March 24, 2021 By: Staff Reports
More than half of the $261 million sales tax component of the Better Streets, Safer City program has been allocated to construction so far, with 119 miles of resurfaced streets among highlights of progress in 2020.
Public Works Director Eric Wenger and Planning Director Geoff Butler delivered the program’s annual report Tuesday to the Oklahoma City Council. Sales tax collections for Better Streets, Safer City ended on March 31, 2020, with bond sales tied to property tax collections funding more improvements through 2027.
The Community and Neighborhood Advancement Advisory Board oversees funding allocations for the sales tax, making recommendations for City Council review and approval.
Progress in 2020
About 119 miles of streets were resurfaced in 2020 with Better Streets, Safer City sales tax funds. The bond-funded portion of the program includes hundreds of millions of dollars more in street resurfacing funds.
The sales tax funding paid for 21 miles of sidewalk construction in 2020. Twenty-two schools, 16 parks and 58 bus stops have improved pedestrian access thanks to the Better Streets, Safer City sales tax sidewalks.
About 10 miles of trails were resurfaced with the funds in 2020. Two new trails included in the sales tax program – the Lake Hefner Connection and the Deep Fork Creek Trail – are also in design and will begin construction soon.
Four miles of bike lanes, including the first protected on-street bike lanes in Oklahoma City history, were also completed in 2020 using the sales tax funding.
Construction on sales tax-funded projects is likely to last another two years, with construction on bond-funded projects extending beyond 2027.