Wednesday, December 5, 2018

December 3, 2018 Council Meeting Notes: City Park Upgrades, Utility Rate Increases in 2019, and Building a Happy, Healthy Langley

Over the last year, Langley City’s Engineering, Parks, and Environment Department has been busy making our community happier, healthier, and safer. Rick Bomhof, who is the director of the department, provided a year-end update on the many projects that have been completed over the last year.

I’ve posted about many of these projects over the last year, so I won’t be highlighting all the projects that Rick touched on at the meeting. There have been several broad themes that the City has been focusing on. Langley City is an old community with end-of-life underground infrastructure. Replacing storm sewers, culverts, sewer and water mains has been one of the prioritizes over the last year. Reinvesting in our parks was also a priority with enhancements made to playgrounds and trails throughout our community.

One of the major programs that the Engineering department is actively working on is upgrading every City-owned streetlight to LED. This will make our streets brighter in the evening and at night, and will save taxpayer dollars due to less energy use. Rick noted that there was an issue with the initial order of LEDs which delayed the rollout, but things are now moving forward. To date, LED streetlights have been rolled out along Logan Avenue, 56 Avenue East, and 203rd Street. Many of the new black streetlights in downtown are also LED. In addition, the City has added improved lighting in lanes and streets where there wasn’t street-lighting in the past.

Giving people safe transportation choices has also been a focus over the last year. The City has installed new and improved walking and cycling infrastructure in our community. This is important because as our community grows, we must give people choices to get out of congestion. The City has also installed traffic calming measures in our community which has resulted in drivers slowing down which creates safer streets.

Langley City’s 2019 budget will be presented early next year, and I look forward to continuing the trend of infrastructure investment focus areas that we have been working towards over the last few years.

On the topic of budget, the Metro Vancouver regional district provides water, sewer, and solid waste management services to Langley City. As I posted about last month, the regional district is also upgrading their aging infrastructure. Water, sewer, and solid waste management rates will be going up for Langley City residents in 2019.

Langley City council gave first, second, and third reading to update these rates for 2019 as follows:

  • The water rate will increase by $1.31 per cubic metre. This works out to an increase of $26.40 for single-family housing, and $15.20 for apartments and townhouses on average.
  • The sewer rate will increase by $1.19 per cubic metre. This works out to an increase of $21.12 for single-family housing, and $12.16 for apartments and townhouses on average.
  • The solid waste fee will increase by $8 per household.

Langley City council also approved tendering a contract to Cedar Crest Lands (B.C.) Ltd. in the amount of $627,772 to continue with the renewal of City Park. The following map shows what will be completed.

A map of upgrades to City Park. Select map to enlarge.

The renewal of City Park is a multi-year program, so this is one of many contracts that will likely be tendered.

Next Monday will be the last council meeting of 2018.

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