Dec. 10, 2021
This is the latest edition of Week In Review — a series of weekly messages from the Mayor and City Council to help Richardson residents and businesses keep up to date on events at City Hall. If you would like to sign up to receive this in a weekly e-mail click here.
Throughout the year, the City Council or City Plan Commission will hold meetings on topics of significant interest to local neighborhoods or the community in general. Links to view all City Council or City Plan Commission meeting documents that may have topics of interest to you can be found here:
City Manager to Retire
City Manager Dan Johnson announced this week that he is retiring from the City of Richardson, effective Feb. 28, 2022. Johnson’s career in municipal government spans 45 years, 25 of which have been in Richardson. He has played a central role in Richardson’s development through recruitment and support strategies for projects such as the Texas Instruments Wafer Fabrication facility on Renner Road, the Galatyn Commons Office Park and the Renaissance Hotel and Conference Center.
Johnson has served as Richardson’s city manager since June 2012. Prior to that he served 16 years as Richardson’s deputy city manager. Earlier service included responsibilities as city manager and deputy city manager of the City of Carrollton, director of regional services for the North Central Texas Council of Governments and budget officer for the City of Sherman.
The City Council will consider options for a successor at a future date.
Press Release: here
Tactics Outlined for Implementing Council Goals/Strategies
City staff presented tactics to the City Council Monday for implementing each of the 12 strategies recently adopted with the Council’s 2021-23 Statement of Goals. The 73 tactics are the “nuts and bolts” of the goals, i.e., the steps the City proposes to take in the coming years to achieve the Council’s goals/strategies. Tactics are formally presented every two years and are developed with input from the City Council, Boards and Commissions, City staff and the community.
A few of the proposed tactics include:
- Expand culturally diverse programming and event opportunities
- Refresh neighborhood integrity codes to provide clarity and increased transparency
- Begin efforts to activate additional emergency medical services at Fire Station 6
- Enhance opportunities to work with retail centers on building modernization and site renewal projects
After incorporating City Council feedback received Monday, staff will add the tactics to the 2021-23 Statement of Goals and Strategies found here. Tactics are added as needed in response to developments throughout the Council’s term.
Council Reviews 2021 Bond and Capital Improvement Plan
The City Council was given an overview of the City’s 5-year Capital Improvement Plan Monday, including the implementation plan for Year 1 of the 2021 Bond Program as well as a look at other capital projects underway over the next five years. The near-$400 million in projects (the highest five-year investment in projects in the City’s history) includes:
|2015 Bond Program – Remaining Projects||$27,825,000|
|Utility Improvement Projects||$83,512,000|
|Special Maintenance Initiatives||$28,000,000|
|2021 Bond Program Projects||$190,000,000
(+$34,500,000 in other sources)
|Street & Alley Annual Maintenance Programs||$31,845,000|
Because of the extensive number of projects planned, the City has hired local engineering firm AECOM to act as general engineering consultant and augment City staff project management duties. An AECOM team of 2-6 people will be housed at City Hall over the next 5-7 years.
Website: Watch Monday's Presentation
Census Data Reported to City Council; Boundary Commission Planned
Partial results from the 2020 Census were presented to the City Council Monday by Development Services staff. The data includes total population, voting age population, race and ethnicity, broken down by geographic areas (block/block group/tract/city). Richardson’s population has grown by around 20,000 residents since 2010, from 99,223 to 119,469.
As per the City Charter, once Census data is released every 10 years, the City Council is required to appoint a commission to review Council district boundaries and revise the boundaries if necessary, to ensure population equality between districts. A District Boundary Commission will be appointed at a future City Council meeting. The Commission will hold public meetings and one or more public hearings before making recommendations to the Council.
In 2022, additional data from the 2020 Census will be released including five-year age groups, sex and household type. The City plans to update its demographic information web page as information becomes available.
City’s Year-end Financial Report Given
The City’s year-end financial report was presented to the City Council Monday by City Budget Office staff. The focus was on the performance of revenues and expenditures against the year-end estimates developed in June.
Revenues and expenditures across the City’s five major operating funds (General, Water and Sewer, Solid Waste Services, Golf and Hotel/Motel Tax) ended the year performing above or close to the June performance expectations, with any fund revenue losses being offset by lower expenditures in the same fund. As such, all funds had ending balances that exceeded or were on target with the June year-end estimates.
Website: Monday's Council Presentation
City Council Accepts Salvation Army “Red Kettle Challenge”
The City Council has established a “Virtual Red Kettle” in response to a challenge the Plano City Council has extended to the city councils of Allen, Frisco, McKinney and Richardson to raise funds for the Salvation Army’s 2021 Red Kettle campaign. The community is encouraged to donate online by clicking here or scanning the QR code below.
The support will provide food, shelter and hope to those in need in our community all year long.
Christmas Parade Held, Winners Announced
Thanks to pleasant weather and two years of anticipation, enthusiastic crowds enjoyed Richardson’s annual Christmas Parade in-person Dec. 4. With a theme of “There’s No Place Like Home,” the parade included 52 entries, 20 dignitaries, about 1,380 participants and dozens of volunteers helping throughout the parade route.
Four local medical workers served as the parade’s ceremonial grand marshals. Parade participants contributed over 600 toys and $2,235 to Network of Community Ministries to assist families in the community over the holidays.
Awards were presented later in the day at Santa’s Village, just prior to the Village’s grand opening. The top three specialty awards announced:
- Mayor’s Award—Tumbleweeds 4-H Club
- Grand Marshal’s Award—Southern USA Falun Dafa Association
- Chairman’s Elf Award—YMCA Young Bucks
Santa’s Village Continues; Hometown Thursdays Conclude Dec. 16
Santa’s Village officially opened for the season Dec. 4 with the traditional lighting of the giant pecan tree and the grand arrival of Santa Claus in a Richardson fire truck. The holiday “city within a city” located behind the Library features 16 tiny buildings, each with a treat and/or fun activity for children. Attendees can also enjoy live performances and concessions. The event will be open Dec. 10-12 and Dec. 16-19 from 6-9 p.m.
Admission and parking are free, with special nights called Hometown Thursdays reserved especially for Richardson residents.
A free ticket is required to attend a Hometown Thursday. Tickets are available (while they last) at the following locations during regular business hours:
- Richardson City Hall, 411 W. Arapaho Rd.
- Heights Recreation Center, 711 W. Arapaho Rd.
- Huffhines Recreation Center, 200 N. Plano Rd.
Richardson residents must show proof of residency, such as a driver’s license or water bill, to receive up to eight tickets per household. A limited number of tickets are available.
City Wins Second Place Nationally for 2021 National Night Out
The National Association of Town Watch has awarded Richardson second place in the nation for its 2021 National Night Out (NNO) celebration. Richardson was awarded in the category for areas with populations of 100,000-300,000. The Richardson celebration took place Oct. 5 at local parks and featured neighborhood group picnics and visits by costumed characters, first responders and local dignitaries.
NNO is held annually and promotes camaraderie between neighbors and between neighborhoods and local police, helping foster a sense of community and prevent crime.
Rotary Club Honors City Employees
Shay Brooks and Pam Polsky were recently named the 2021 Supervisor of the Year and Employee of the Year, respectively, by the Richardson Rotary Club. The awards, given by the Club since 1992, are specially designed to recognize City employees who made significant contributions during the past year.
Brooks has been with the City since 2014, first in the position of teen librarian for the Library while also serving as a graphic designer in the Community Services department. She has supervised the Library’s Youth Services Department since 2017, leading a team of four full-time and five part-time librarians.
Polsky joined the City in 2013, first as a part-time assistant house manager for the Eisemann Center. In less than two years, her passion for doing events and connecting with people earned her a promotion to full-time assistant house manager and in October of this year, she was promoted to the full-time house manager position.
New Hours Begin at Rec Centers
The Parks and Recreation Department has announced adjustments to the Huffhines and Heights Recreation Center operating schedules.
Huffhines Recreation Center
Wednesday operating hours added to weekly schedule.
- Monday-Friday 6 a.m.-8 p.m.
- Saturday 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
- Closed on Sunday
Heights Recreation Center
Thursday operating hours added to weekly schedule.
- Monday-Friday 6 a.m.-8 p.m.
- Closed on Saturday
- Sunday 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
As additional staff are hired, the rec centers will increase hours further with the plan to eventually return to normal operating hours.
Animal Shelter Exceeds Capacity; Adoptions, Donations Needed
The Richardson Animal Shelter announced this week that it is over capacity due in part to two recent cases of cat hoarding/animal cruelty. A total of 15 cats were brought into the shelter, which has caused a significant impact on the facility including a need for more food, supplies, kennels, cages and volunteers. Volunteers are needed to help clean and make sure all the shelter animals are happy and healthy, and to become fosters for the shelter, taking in some of the animals temporarily. People may also consider providing shelter pets a forever home through adoption, although some of the cats must wait until court cases are resolved.
Food and supply donations may be left outside the Shelter’s front door at 1330 Columbia Dr. (contact in advance for large quantities). Visit the Shelter’s website for more information about adoption, fostering and volunteering.
Video: Cat Adoptions at the Richardson Animal Shelter on Vimeo
Animal Shelter Finds Secret Santas Through Corporate Donations
Employees of NewGen Strategies and Solutions, a Richardson-based consulting firm, recently created an “angel tree” at its office to benefit the Richardson Animal Shelter. The tree is decorated with homemade “photo cutout” paper ornaments depicting Animal Shelter residents, with information about Shelter wish list items on the back of each ornament. Employees wishing to spread some holiday cheer choose an ornament off the tree and purchase needed items online, which are then shipped directly to the Shelter.
Any local group or individual wanting to donate items to the Shelter or host a similar angel tree may find the Shelter’s wish lists online year-round.
Richardson IQ® “Front Door” Project Receives Urban Design Award
Richardson has been recognized with a 2021 Urban Design Award from the Greater Dallas Planning Council (GDPC) for the Arapaho Center Transit Oriented Development Plan. The proposed plan won an Honorable Mention in the category of Unbuilt Dream/Study Award for “incorporating traditional best urban design practices while advancing new ideas and principles such as shared streets, mobility hubs and detailed shared parking analysis.”
The City’s Development Services Department worked in partnership with Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) and engineering firm AECOM on the plan, the result of several years of planning and investment by the City to reposition the DART Arapaho Center Station as the walkable, mixed-use “front door” to The IQ®.
The GDPC hosts the awards annually to recognize projects and individuals for excellence and leadership in urban design and urban planning in the Dallas area.
Website: Urban Design Awards (gdpc.org)
Richardson Gains Two of DART’s New GoLink Zones
Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) began operating 13 new GoLink zones Monday, including two in Richardson. DART’s GoLink service offers on-demand, curb-to-curb shuttles to anywhere within each specified zone as well as to DART transit facilities, at no additional cost with a valid DART fare.
The new Richardson GoLink zones are in the northeastern and central portions of the city—the #10 East Telecom zone covers portions of three existing bus routes in the Telecom area and extends into Plano; the #8 Central Richardson zone covers portions of three other existing bus routes.
In total, DART now supports 30 GoLink zones (plus one zone co-supported with a nonprofit in southern Dallas County), which will replace some traditional fixed-route bus service when DART’s bus network redesign changes go into effect Jan. 24. All existing bus routes will continue operating until then.
Pavement Repair Work Closes Lanes on Jupiter Near Arapaho
The right, center, and left lanes of northbound Jupiter Road between Janwood Lane and Arapaho Road may be closed to traffic alternately for work associated with the City’s Annual Street Pavement Repair Project. Two of the lanes will be closed from 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. After 3:30 p.m., one lane will remain closed overnight and two lanes will be open to traffic until the next morning at 9 a.m. The work is expected to be complete by late December.
Toy and Food Drive Benefiting Network Continues through Dec. 17
Donations of unwrapped toys and canned/shelf stable food are needed for the Richardson Fire Department’s annual toy and food drive, benefiting the clients of Network of Community Ministries.
Items may be taken through Dec. 17 to:
- Any Richardson Fire Station
- Fleet Department at the City Service Center (1260 Columbia Dr.)
- Library (900 Civic Center Dr.)
- Grand Hall at City Hall (411 W. Arapaho Rd.)
Free Dog-Friendly Outdoor Movie at Animal Shelter Dec. 11: “Santa Paws”
Animal Shelter, outdoors at 1330 Columbia Dr.
Admission: Free (donations appreciated)
Saturday, Dec. 11
Bring your dog (on a leash), chairs and/or blankets and join Furry Friends of Richardson, Inc. at this fun fundraising event featuring the movie, “Santa Paws.” Concessions will be available for sale and a free doggie treat bag will be given to each participant. All proceeds will benefit the Richardson Animal Shelter.
CityLine Outdoor Free Movie Dec. 11: “Elf”
1150 State Street
Saturday, Dec. 11 (postponed from its original Nov. 27 showing date due to rain)
Bring blankets, lawn chairs, friends, family and pets to cozy up for a showing of the holiday classic, “Elf.” Picnics are welcome; food as well as movie-themed drinks will be available for sale. Free parking is available along State Street or on the ground level of all garages.
IQ® Brew Dec. 16
The Drawing Board, 1900 Jay Ell Dr.
Admission: Free; register in advance here
Thursday, Dec. 16
8:30 a.m.-10 a.m.
In this final installment of a five-part series featuring UT Dallas research teams, The IQ® Brew welcomes Dr. Baowei Fei, director of the UT Dallas Center for Imaging & Surgical Innovation (CISI). The mission of the Center is to shape and advance imaging and surgical technology through innovative research and inspiring education, with the goal of establishing CISI as a national leader in the field. It is one of five UT Dallas research teams that will anchor a public presence in the Richardson Innovation Quarter.
IQ® Brew is an ongoing networking and educational series hosted by the City’s Office of Innovation & Placemaking Initiatives and Richardson Chamber of Commerce that features short presentations from entrepreneurs, small businesses, innovation ecosystem builders and subject-matter experts.
900 Civic Center Dr., 75080
“Saturday Morning Kids” Family Storytimes Continue
First Floor Program Room
Saturdays, December 11 and 18
For kids ages 3-6 and their families
Join Library staff for a free drop-in family storytime. All children must be accompanied by at least one adult. No residency or registration requirements.
Dungeons & Dragons “Gigs & Goblins” Dec. 18
Basement Program Room
Saturday, December 18
For Adults and Teens
A choose-your-own adventure Dungeons & Dragons event! Bring your own customized Level-2 Adventurer, a Figurine and a Character Sheet or choose from 12 premade characters. Beginners are welcome.
Registration required. Email StephenW.Davis@cor.gov with your name and library card number to register or for more information.
At the Eisemann Center:
- “The Nutcracker” Dec. 10-12
Hill Performance Hall
Tickets: $22-$52 (streaming is available Dec. 11 for $52)
Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m.; matinees at 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday
Dallas Repertoire Ballet presents its 29th annual production of “The Nutcracker.” Follow the classic story of Clara, along with her toy nutcracker, as they journey through a magical and wondrous dream world filled with brave battling soldiers, wistful snowflakes and candy-like delights.
- “Clara’s Dream” and “Holiday Review” Dec. 11-12
Bank of America Theatre
Tickets: $30 (both streaming and in-person available)
Saturday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m.
This two-part production from Contemporary Ballet Dallas includes “Clara’s Dream,” a “best of The Nutcracker” ballet presentation, followed by “Holiday Review,” featuring tap, jazz, hip hop and contemporary dance performances set to holiday songs.
- Keyboard Conversations®: “The Glorious Music of Chopin” Dec. 13
Bank of America Theatre
Concert pianist Geoffrey Siegel blends commentary and performance in his Keyboard Conversations® series—the Dec. 13 program focuses on Chopin and includes Chopin’s “Heroic” polonaise, as well as some of his nocturnes, etudes and mazurkas.
Unless otherwise noted, tickets to Eisemann Center events are available at the Eisemann Center Ticket Office.
J.J. Pearce HS Theatre Presents “Anything Goes” Dec. 17-19
Edith V. Pearce Auditorium, 1600 N. Coit Rd.
Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m., with matinees Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m.
Set to the music of Cole Porter, “Anything Goes” follows passengers en route from New York to England as they employ disguises, plots, confessions, mistaken identities and marriage proposals to find true love and success.
Note: Masks required. Box office opens one hour prior to showtime (cash preferred). Online ticket sales close 2.5 hours prior to showtime.
Rich-Tone Chorus Performs at Pearl Harbor Commemoration in Hawaii
Local female barbershop harmony group The Rich-Tone Chorus (aka “Rich-Tones”) performed in Hawaii this week to help commemorate the 80th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. The group, made up of more than 100 women, was invited by the mayor of Honolulu to perform as part of a series of events. Led by the Marine Forces Pacific Band, the Rich-Tones joined other bands and choirs from across America in saluting veterans, active service members and their families.
The Rich-Tone Chorus is funded in part by the Cultural Arts Commission.
Video: Rich-Tones Chorus Commemorate Pearl Harbor 80th Anniversary in Hawaii on Vimeo
More information: www.facebook.com/richtonechorus and www.richtones.org.
“A Christmas Carol, the Musical” Continues at RCT
770 N. Coit Rd. #2405
Through Dec. 19
Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m.
Repertory Company Theatre is presenting the holiday classic as tweaked by Broadway’s Alan Menken and Lynn Ahrens. This musical ghost story follows the miserly Ebenezer Scrooge through a series of strange and magical journeys, where he ultimately discovers the true spirit of the holiday season.
“Inspecting Carol” Continues at RTC
518 W. Arapaho Rd. Ste 113
Through Dec. 19
7:30 p.m. Thursdays, 8 p.m. Fridays-Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays
This “laugh-a-minute romp” tells the story of a regional theater company that is rehearsing its annual production of “A Christmas Carol” when it gets news they may be inspected by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) in order to receive a grant. When they assume that a man asking to audition is really an NEA informer, everyone caters to the bewildered wannabe actor and he is given a role. Hilarity ensues as the audience (and the clueless theater company) awaits the real inspector.
After his miraculous transformation, Ebenezer Scrooge is back to his old ways and is suing Jacob Marley and the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future for breaking and entering, kidnapping, slander, pain and suffering, attempted murder and the intentional infliction of emotional distress.
Annual Grease Recycling Event Strikes Oil
As it has done for the past three years, the Richardson community keeps breaking records in its Thanksgiving grease collection/diversion efforts. Around 240 gallons of used cooking oil were collected during the City’s annual “Cease the Grease” event held Nov. 25-Dec. 7, 50 gallons more than what was collected in 2020, 70 gallons more than in 2019 and double the amount collected in 2018. Richardson’s Health Department coordinates the free collection each year to help divert holiday cooking oil and grease from being poured down kitchen drains, which can create buildup in sewer pipes and cause unwanted wastewater backup.
The City partners with Texas-based American BioSource to collect the oil/grease, which is recycled into biofuels.
Free Landscape Design Workshop Dec. 16
Thursday, Dec. 16
Create a lush North Texas yard and garden by learning how to design your landscape with smart choices and efficiency in mind. This 45-minute workshop will be taught by a Master Gardener and is a Texas Smartscape event supported by the North Central Texas Council of Governments and the Tarrant Regional Water District.
Registration website: Landscape Design Basics Registration
Greenskeeper I ($32,988-$48,612 salary)
The Golf Department is looking an individual who can act as a crew chief and care and maintain the golf courses, golf facility, equipment, and perform other related work as required.
Public Information Coordinator ($59,184-$92,364 salary)
The CIS Department is looking for an individual with experience in public relations, journalism, or other mass communication related field who can assist with conveying information on the City’s social media outreach channels for city news, community events, and crisis communications and perform other related work as required.
Senior Combination Inspector ($60,708-$79,704 salary)
The Community Services Department is looking for an individual with experience in building inspection and enforcement who will inspect buildings, construction sites and construction components for compliance with building, electrical, plumbing or mechanical codes and perform other related work as required.
For other job opportunities, visit www.cor.net/jobs
Animal Shelter Pet of the Week
Say hi to Brutus! This handsome sweetheart is looking for his forever person. He was found abandoned in the animal shelter parking lot by his owner, but he has not let that stop him from showing love to everyone and being super sweet. He is a very affectionate dog who would love to give you kisses! He LOVES toys and running, but can sit calmly while you are petting him. If you want to meet this dashing 5-year-old American Staffordshire Terrier who is neutered, fully vetted and microchipped, come to the shelter to meet and adopt him today!
Schedule an appointment: https://richardsonanimalshelter.setmore.com/
For information about animals available for adoption, visit the Animal Shelter’s web page here.
City Council Links
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