Board Approves $3.3 Billion 10-Year Infrastructure Plan

Published on July 19, 2016

  • County investing $2.8 billion, Schools investing $510.29 million
  • Fully funding Arlington Public Schools' 2016 bond referenda request
  • Funding for Metro, repaving streets, Lubber Run Community Center and premium bus service
  • $177 million County bond referenda for November ballot

The Arlington County Board today approved a $3.3 billion combined County and Schools 10-year Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) for fiscal years 2017-2026.

The plan funds County capital projects and infrastructure of $2.8 billion and Arlington Public Schools' (APS) adopted $510.29 million CIP, for a total of $3.3 billion in planned capital projects and infrastructure investment over the next decade for both County and Schools.

"This plan provides funding to address the challenges posed by the fact that our community is growing," said County Board Chair Libby Garvey. "We will make strategic investments in our schools, transportation, land acquisition and technology. That means APS will have the resources it needs to build new schools and expand existing ones. We will improve bus service across the County, and build a premium bus service connecting Columbia Pike and the Pentagon City-Crystal City corridor. At the same time, we will invest more in land acquisition, improve customer service by investing in technology and fund the replacement of the aging Lubber Run community Center."

The Board voted 5-0 to adopt the CIP and to approve additional guidance to the County Manager.

Highlights

 

Strategic investments over the next 10 years:

 

  • Arlington Public Schools: Full support for APS's $510.29 million plan to address growing enrollment, including full funding of its 2016 $138.83 million referenda request, which addresses capacity expansion.
  • Metro and Transportation: $1.6 billion in extensive investments to ensure safety, accessibility and efficiency for commuters on bike, foot, car and transit over ten years. These include the County's continued $30 million commitment to Metro over the next two years.
    • The CIP lays out a plan to fund the recently adopted Transit Development Plan approach for new, modified and expanded bus service over the next decade, including premium bus service that will offer a one-seat ride from the west end of Columbia Pike to Crystal City. It also funds the Neighborhood Complete Streets Program and expands the streetlight management plan.
  • Lubber Run Community Center: Planned funding includes $46.5 million in new bonds for design and construction in the 2016 and 2018 referenda for replacement of the County's aging community center. After the referendum is considered by the voters, the County will undertake, before the end of 2016, a community engagement process on the arrangement of the facility and outdoor amenities on the site.

 

  • Fire Station 8:  $1.12 million is included in the 2016 referendum to support the design and planning efforts to replace Fire Station 8 at its current location on Lee Highway.  Construction funding is anticipated to be included in the 2018 referenda request.

 

  • Technology: Provides for a new online payment portal and replacement of the tax assessment and collection system.

 

  • Neighborhood Conservation: Continues to fund this neighborhood-based program that improves neighborhoods, with $12 million per referenda.

 

  • Land acquisition: Increases funding over last CIP to $3 million per referenda.

 

 

  • Longer term projects: Funds the acquisition of the Buck property (a six-acre site on North Quincy Street), and possibility of improvements needed at potential future acquisitions through the Virginia Hospital Center. Invests over the medium-to-long term to meet new public safety technology and regional interoperability requirements. Anticipates planning beginning in 2022 for a community facilities study for the Central Library/Quincy Park area to maximize existing land while preserving and maximizing open space.

 

Maintaining existing infrastructure —funding several areas of basic infrastructure:

 

  • Parks and Facilities: Continues the County's reinvestment in playgrounds, courts, fields and essential components of buildings such as HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) and roofing systems. Jennie Dean Park design will begin when the Four Mile Run Valley Initiative is complete.
    • Includes funding to expand the gymnastics program at the Barcroft Sports & Fitness Center, and funding for a new program, which provides $1 million every two years to modernize off-street trails.
    • Existing funds for Long Bridge Park will be used to design and construct a reduced aquatics building program and complete the 10.5 acres of park development and esplanade.  Additional funding is included in fiscal years 2023-2024 to plan and design a fourth synthetic field and parking structure at the park.  Funding to build the field and garage will be considered as part of future CIPs.
  • Paving: A $5 million increase in paving over the next two years, bringing the total to $24 million over two years.

 

  • Water/sewer system infrastructure: Water delivery, sanitary sewer collection and wastewater treatment to provide high quality services and products and stormwater management investments to reduce potential stormwater impacts to public health, safety and property.

 

  • Technology: Continued re-investment in technology to replace and support basic County functions such as PCs, servers, network capabilities etc., as well as critical public safety equipment including defibrillators, fire alerting system, mobile and portable radios, mobile data computers and fire vehicle refreshment.

 

Financial Sustainability

The Capital Improvement Plan is within the financial and debt management policies adopted by the Board, which are important to ensuring maintenance of Arlington's triple-AAA bond ratings.

2016 referenda

The Board today also approved the 2016 bond referenda, which includes projects in the following categories:

Item Bond Referenda
Metro and Transportation $ 58,785,000
Local Parks and Recreation    19,310,000
Community Infrastructure    98,850,000
Arlington Public Schools  138,830,000
TOTAL $315,775,000

 

Public Process

A total of $315.775 million in bonds will be put before voters, in four separate questions. The referenda will be held during the general election on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2016.

The County Manager released the Proposed CIP in May 2016 after a public process that included three public forums and more than 430 online comments. Since then, staff provided briefings and answered questions for commissions and committees, and made presentations during five County Board work sessions. The Proposed CIP was posted on the CIP webpage, and the County Board held a public hearing on June 22. The staff report and County Board actions at the July 19 meeting can be found on the County website. Scroll down to Item #57 on the Agenda for the Tuesday, July 19 Recessed Meeting. To read the 2016 bond referenda resolutions and questions, scroll down to Item #58.

Background

Arlington updates its Capital Improvement Plan -- a planning document that outlines the County's long range capital investment objectives -- every two years. Proposed capital projects frequently include parks and recreation, government facilities, community conservation, technology, multi-modal transportation systems, Metro and transit, schools, utilities and other capital programs.

The County's Adopted CIP includes referenda amounts requested by the Arlington School Board to be voted on in November.

Categories: Budget, Building & Construction, County Board, News Releases, Projects & Planning

CORRECTION: this release incorrectly reported that the County's planned upgrade to the bus service along Columbia Pike will offer a one-seat ride from the west end of Columbia Pike to Potomac Yard. That is incorrect. The one-seat ride will be from the west end of Columbia Pike to Crystal City.