WESTFIELD — The Westfield mayor and council voted Tuesday to go out to bid for over $3.5 million in capital bonds that will be used to finance community improvements, upgrade the local infrastructure and provide some new equipment for the police department.
The majority of this year’s $3,860,000 capital budget will be allocated to road paving and repairs — including curb installation and drainage improvements — along Summit Avenue from South Avenue to Grove Street. The town plans to repave another six miles of local roads this year, Westfield Administrator Jim Gildea said Tuesday, adding that another 14 miles will be repaved through existing agreements with local utility providers.
“It’s going to be another busy season in terms of paving,” Mr. Gildea said. “I’d like to remind everyone to download the Nixle app. It’s the best way for us to get information out about roadwork and to keep things moving as smoothly as possible.”
Residents looking to install a generator or switch from electricity to gas should check to see if their roads are scheduled for repaving before making any arrangements.
“That kind of work usually requires a cut in the roadway, which is something that we would prefer to get done before these roads are repaved,” Mr. Gildea said. “If you’re thinking about making a change like this, please call the engineering department within the next month or so and we will help you figure out how to navigate everything.”
The town’s road-paving efforts, which will include resurfacing the parking lots at Town Hall and the library, are expected to cost roughly $2.4 million to complete.
Other items of note contained in this year’s capital budget include sidewalk improvements along the North Avenue corridor (estimated to cost about $625,000), a new roof for the Department of Public Works (DPW) building and improvements to the Town Council chambers ($200,000), a new fire hose ($50,000), new communication systems for the police department ($160,000), new benches and a bathroom facility for Houlihan/Sid Fay Fields, and a new work truck for the DPW ($220,000).
In other community news, Mr. Gildea said Tuesday that residents who have been waitlisted for membership at the Westfield Memorial Pool will soon be notified as to whether or not they will be able to enjoy the complex this summer.
“These numbers always surprise people, but we can support over 9,000 members at our pool each year,” Mr. Gildea said. “So far, we have filled about 7,000 spots with returning members, but now we can start moving through the waitlist.”
The Westfield Memorial Pool currently is accepting applications for new and returning lifeguards.
“These positions will be open throughout the summer, and it’s important that we fill as many as we possibly can,” Mr. Gildea said. “It’s a large pool and we need to make sure we have enough staff to support it.”