Taylor City Council opts for road repairs over rec center
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Plans for a multi-million dollar recreation center in Taylor have been scrapped as city leaders say the money is desperately needed for road repairs.
According to Assistant City Manager Jeff Straub, about half of the roads in Taylor are “failing.”
“By failing, I would mean would require a total rebuild," Straub said.
A smooth road may be easy to take for granted, but it’s a luxury which does not come cheap.
"It has gotten to the point where if we fixed them all today it would be $66 million,” Straub said. “Over a reasonable course of time to address the magnitude of this issue, it is more like $100 million. That's an awful amount of money for a city of this size."
Some of the needed money could soon be coming from what started as a multimillion dollar recreation center—a rec center which many in Taylor did not want in the first place.
Back in 2010 voters denied a tax hike which would have been used to pay for the center. Despite failing with the voters, the plan was pursued by City Council until it was ultimately shot down last week.
During a specially called meeting Tuesday, the Taylor City Council agreed to use that money towards streets.
"It is totally embarrassing that we have a city of this size that is trying to be on the forefront of attracting businesses that we don't have good streets that attract businesses that people want to live in our community," resident Joe Naizer said.
But a problem this severe doesn't happen overnight and it doesn’t get fixed overnight.
"I would like to know who you go talk to except the city council to go get the roads fixed," Willis Barton said.
City officials point to other cities including Austin that have a street maintenance utility paid by its residents. In order to create a similar utility, Taylor residents must amend the city’s charter.