The Odessa City Council approved temporarily lowering the speed limit on University Boulevard to 30 miles per hour during construction set to begin in the coming months to widen the thoroughfare.
The $15 million project, funded through a 2013 public works bond, will widen the thoroughfare to five lanes and straighten a curve near the YMCA. Construction could take two years, but city officials do not plan to close the thoroughfare.
The speed limit reduction, which would apply to parts of the construction zone marked by signs, would revert back to 35 miles per hour once the project is complete.
The Tuesday vote to lower the speed limit passed 4-0. Mayor David Turner and District 3 Councilwoman Barbara Graff were absent.
Crews earlier this year began clearing land for the widened roadway, including utility poles and fences. Traffic was reduced to one lane in each direction.
The first phase of the project will widen the area of the thoroughfare from Andrews Highway to Maple. To make way for the project, the city bought properties for a total of $1.47 million, reaching deals with property owners that avoided the use of eminent domain.
IN OTHER BUSINESS, THE CITY COUNCIL:
- Approved minutes from meetings on April 10 and April 17, including two joint meetings with the Ector County Commissioners’ Court.
- Approved a resolution finding that Oncor’s application for approval of a distribution cost recovery factor to increase distribution rates within the city should be denied.
- Approved a public hearing and consider first approval of a request by Shihab Diais for original zoning of Retail-One on more than four acres northwest of the intersection of North Faudree Road and Windchase Street.
- Approved for the first time an ordinance incorporating the City of Odessa’s current gas and electricity franchises into the “Business Regulations” chapter of the City Code.
- Approved an ordinance amending the City Code to change the name of the “Subdivision Requirements” chapter to the “Development Regulations” chapter and adding a new article codifying regulations already in effect that relate to streets, alleys, water, sewer and drainage improvements standards and requirements.
- Approved and adopted the Cultural Arts Program Exhibition Series Guidelines for Odessa City Hall.
- What: Odessa City Council meeting
- When: Briefing begins at 5 p.m. Tuesday. The regular meeting begins at 6 p.m.
- Where: City Hall, 411 W. Eighth St. Fifth Floor.