General Obligation Bond Update
City of Surprise voters approved three General Obligation (G.O.) Bond questions in November 2017, representing 10 Capital Improvement Projects. The city has already completed Fire Station 304, the Public Works Operations Facility, improvements to Waddell and Litchfield roads, and the majority of the pavement preservation. The remaining projects are expected to be wrapped up by the end of 2021.
Fire Station 308, located at Litchfield Rd. and Cactus Rd., is projected to be complete in the late part of 2021. The 16,000 square foot building is approximately 60% complete, with plans to house an Engine Company, HAZMAT Response Team, and future ambulance.
Greenway Road improvements, from Cotton Ln. to Sarival Ln., are expected to be complete in November 2021, weather permitting. Work is underway to add two more travel lanes, turn lanes, bicycle lanes, sidewalks, and a traffic light at Greenway Rd. and Northwest Ranch Pkwy.
Both the Public Safety Evidence and Readiness Center and the Police Training Facility are about 30% complete and are expected to be finished this fall. Both are located at 134th and Foxfire drives. One building will house the public safety tactical and emergency equipment and police evidence; the other will provide police training space.
City staff is also in the process of exploring potential options for acquiring 16 acres of land in the southwest region for a shared Police Substation and Fire Station and city park. For more information on the G.O. Bond projects, please visit surpriseaz.gov/DecideSurprise.
2021 National Community Survey
The 2021 National Community Survey (NCS) results reveal at least 9 in 10 residents gave excellent or good ratings to the overall quality of life in Surprise and the city as a place to live. Responses were collected on various topics ranging from traffic flow to public safety to senior and youth services. City official will use results to prioritize projects for Surprise, and indicate where limited city funding should go based on services most desired.
Here are the overall ratings in each category:
- Economy – 88% Overall economic health of Surprise (Higher than national benchmark)
- Mobility / Transportation – 41% Overall quality of the transportation system (auto, bicycle, foot, bus) in Surprise (Lower than national benchmark).
- Community Design – 79% Overall design or layout of Surprise’s residential and commercial areas (Higher than national benchmark).
- Utilities – 83% Overall quality of the utility infrastructure in Surprise, such as water, sewer, storm water, electric, gas. (Similar to national benchmark).
- Safety – 85% Overall feeling of safety in Surprise (Similar to national benchmark).
- Natural Environment – 79% Overall quality of natural environment in Surprise (Similar to national benchmark).
- Park and Recreation – 79% Overall quality of parks and recreation opportunities (Similar to national benchmark).
- Health and Wellness – 80% Overall health and wellness opportunities in Surprise and 80% Quality of health services (Similar to national benchmark).
- Education, Arts and Culture – 62% Overall opportunities for education, culture, and the arts (Similar to national benchmark).
- Inclusivity and Engagement – 64% Sense of community and 81% making all residents feel welcome (Similar to national benchmark).
To view the complete results of the 2021 National Community Survey please visit www.surpriseaz.gov/ncs
Solid Waste Rate Increase
Starting July 1, 2021, single-family solid waste (trash) customers monthly base rate will increase $0.10 per month, to $23.50. The monthly rate will increase by $0.10 each fiscal year through FY2024, bringing the rate to $23.70 on July 1, 2023. Residential water and wastewater utility rates will remain unchanged. Customers who have automatic payments with their financial institution are advised to update their accounts to reflect the changes to their utility rate.
In February 2019, the Utility Rate Study was approved, creating a five-year structured schedule to obtain the necessary revenues required to operate utilities and maintain infrastructure while also considering asset replacement and emergency funding needs.
New Surprise Police Chief
Peoria Deputy Police Chief, Benny Pina, has been selected to serve as the next Chief of the Surprise Police Department. Prior to his appointment to Deputy Police Chief in Peoria in 2014, Pina served with the Phoenix Police Department for 25 years rising to the rank of Police Commander.
Upon completion of final employment screenings, Chief Pina will fill the vacancy left following the promotion of former Police Chief Terry Young to City of Surprise Assistant City Manager.
Surprise Retail Survey
The annual Surprise Retail Survey launched on April 5, and received approximately 5,100 responses. City staff uses survey results to see what local retail and restaurant spots are most requested, and the city’s retail strengths. In previous years, the Surprise Retail Survey has helped bring In-N-Out Burger, Texas Roadhouse, Oregano’s Pizza Bistro, and Costco to Surprise.
To view the full results, please visit www.surpriseaz.gov/retailsurvey
4th of July Celebration
The City of Surprise will be hosting its 38th Annual 4th of July Celebration on Sunday, July 4th at Mark Coronado Park from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Admission is free with the donation of a canned food item. This event will feature live music from Steven P and Music II Music, a variety of food trucks and a spectacular fireworks show. The 20-minute fireworks show will begin at approximately 8:40 pm., weather permitting. The display will be staged in the area around Bullard Avenue and Paradise Lane.
The Surprise Aquatic Center will also be open for a fun filled evening, with games, activities and a poolside view of the city’s fireworks show. Admission is $6 for residents and $11 for non-residents. You can reserve your spot starting June 9 at http://surpriserec.surpriseaz.gov. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.
Face masks and physical distancing are recommended at all 4th of July celebrations.
As we enter summer, we also enter monsoon season, which officially runs from June 15 to September 30. This means higher humidity, which can lead to thunderstorms, heavy rain, lightning, hail, high winds, flash flooding, dust storms and extreme heat. Our city website offers safety tips and details on where to get free sandbags, in the event of heavy rain and flooding. Be prepared by checking out surpriseaz.gov/monsoon.