The City Council is being asked to spend almost $300,000 on a plan to relocate 39 trees on Olympic Boulevard that would otherwise be destroyed by the incoming Exposition Light Rail line. (photo by Brandon Wise)

Editor’s note: This story is part of an ongoing series that tracks the city’s expenditures appearing on upcoming Santa Monica City Council consent agendas. Consent agenda items are routinely passed by the City Council with little or no discussion from elected officials or the public. However, many of the items have been part of public discussion in the past.

CITY HALL — City officials have come up with a tree plan that even the Lorax might accept.

The City Council will likely approve an almost $300,000 contract to move 39 trees out of the way of the incoming Exposition Light Rail line, which will be built along Olympic Boulevard by 2015.

The right of way adjacent to Olympic Boulevard between Stewart Street and Cloverfield Boulevard is home to 53 trees, 14 of which were deemed unsuitable for preservation based on a battery of criteria.

If approved, Valley Crest Tree Co. will receive a $295,200 contract to move six palm trees, two melaleucas and 31 ficus for planting elsewhere in the city.

The remainder were less certain to survive, or more expensive to relocate because of impacts on infrastructure like utilities, buildings or hardscape around the current tree site.

In all, the City Council is expected to OK $756,933 of expenditures Tuesday night.

Staying connected

City staff will request an additional $100,000 in order to meet demand for the subsidized Internet service it provides to technology, entertainment and other businesses.

City Hall contracts with nLayer Communications, Inc. for support for the fiber optic network and free public WiFi services. The fiber optic network also uses an nLayer service to provide local businesses broadband at reduced rates.

The original agreement was made in January 2010, but a substantial number of new businesses joined the service in the interim and the contract has to be amended to provide service to the new clients.

The total contract modification is $300,000, but only $100,000 is available in the 2011-12 fiscal year.

Electric vehicle leases

City Hall intends to extend leases for 23 electric vehicles, leases which expired in October and November.

The extension for the 23 electric Toyota RAV4s would cost $90,459. Over the course of the next year, staff would work to find new generation electric vehicles to replace the older models.

Staff in the Airport Administration, Facilities, Office of Sustainability and the Environment, Engineering, Building and Safety, Resource Recovery & Recycling and Water Resources use the cars.

Plan check services

A number of special projects will require City Hall to extend a contract with a company that provides support for plan check, inspection and permit services.

The unexpected need to evaluate the “Chain Reaction” sculpture, along with analysis of plans for The Village housing project, mean that City Hall needs another $60,000 for its contract with JAS Pacific, Inc.

The contract will be extended until Feb. 29.

Emergency repairs

City staff will request an additional $51,998.58 to put behind a blanket purchase order with a California-based company to make sure that necessary repairs to traffic signals continue.

The construction costs for new left-turn signals at Colorado Avenue and Second Street and Colorado Avenue and Main Street along with emergency repairs to traffic signals at Olympic Boulevard at 20th Street depleted available funds.

Anything else, be it repair, maintenance or installation, will exceed the available purchase order, and any increase requires a City Council vote.

Approval would bring the two-year-total with Dynalectric, Inc. to $151,969.42.

Replastering

A splash pool at the Santa Monica Swim Center needs to be replastered to prevent people from hurting themselves on jagged edges, according to a staff report.

Staff noticed the damage after two recent inspections, and closed the splash pool. The replastering job is expected to cost $44,850 if approved, and will be performed by Sea-Clear Pools.

Software upgrades

Staff requests money for upgrades and support for software used to track repairs and the use of supplies in the city for the last 11 years.

City Hall purchased software licenses for a computerized maintenance management system from Hansen Information Technologies, Inc. in November 1999.

The software is used to track information about water resources and wastewater maintenance operations to provide more information about infrastructure needs.

To keep the software up to date, staff recommends allocating $232,250 over the next five years for support and regular software updates.

According to the staff report, $41,023 is available in the 2011-12 fiscal year, and the remainder will be contingent on council approval.

Master plan

Staff requested additional money to pay for changes to a long-term plan developed for the City Yards in the wake of a decision to ax a proposal to put a recycling center on site.

The Corporation Yards, located on Michigan Avenue, will no longer have a recycling center on site because the soil can’t support a traditional foundation for a building.

City Hall would like RNL Interplan, Inc., the company originally contracted for the Yard’s master plan, to prepare a study analyzing the best and most practical approach to build on the former landfill.

The study will look at three possible approaches, including the use of structural slabs for building and vehicle areas, removing the landfill and importing a new surface or amend the soil to stabilize the existing soil.

The extra work will cost $37,591.

Bike facilities

Now that Santa Monicans have a new Bike Center, City Hall hopes to make it easier to get to.

The annual resurfacing project for local roads will give the Planning Department the opportunity to broaden access to the facility, located at Colorado Avenue and Second Street.

Staff has chosen to extend an existing contract with the IBI Group by $35,812 to create broader access plans and facilities throughout the city that could be part of the resurfacing project.

IBI already designed roadway striping and signage improvements for the roadways nearby the Bike Center.

ashley@www.smdp.com

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