The city of Granite Shoals got a late Christmas gift from the Texas Department of Agriculture that will help with upgrades at the water treatment plant.
The TDA announced in early January it was awarding a $300,000 Community Development Block Grant to Granite Shoals, which the city will use on electrical improvements at the plant.
In November, voters approved a $7 million bond package to build a new water storage tank and address other water utility improvements.
Along with learning about the grant during the January 14 meeting, Granite Shoals City Council approved engineering service proposals from TRC Engineers Inc. of Austin for the storage tank and water system infrastructure improvements. Engineering costs were approved at $335,562 for the treatment plant and $138,395 for storage tank replacement.
City Manager Jeff Looney said costs are fair market value.
City staff are examining building and upgrade costs associated with the actual work, Looney added, which will be done by a contractor.
They’ve been assembling the information in preparation for a call for bids, which should happen by the end of the month.
“We’re at where we want to be,” Looney said of the timeline and when they want the work completed, which is by the beginning of the summer.
In other business, staff briefed councilors on the improvements at Quarry Park as they move to create indoor sports courts at the facility. In March 2017, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department awarded the city a $500,000 grant for upgrades and improvements at the park.
The plan calls for two volleyball courts, two basketball courts, three batting cages, one shuffleboard court, and one pickleball court at the park, 2221 N. Phillips Ranch Road near City Hall. Currently, the city has two indoor tennis courts.
The city is still taking bids to build a public restroom at the park, but progress is moving forward on the actual structure. H.D. Irving Steel, which has the contract for the structure work, recommended replacing all bolts in the steel girders and possibly replacing the skylights.
“The skylights are very brittle and need replacing,” Looney said. “Over the years, the condensation has affected the building bolts.”
The contractor also recommended replacing the floor in the sports complex structure. City staff will look for companies that specialize in flooring with the aim of having it in place before the start of this year’s GraniteFest on March 28.
Councilors also learned that Emergency Services District No. 3 agreed to pay the city $230,000 for Granite Shoals Fire Department salaries. This helps ensure the department has two firefighters at the fire hall 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
“It was a win-win situation for everybody,” Looney said. “They had that reserve to do that. It was a good deal for everybody to approve.