- Published: 21 February 2020
Monroe’s Smart City initiatives were a major focus of Mayor Jamie Mayo’s 2020 State of the City Address Thursday at the Monroe Civic Center.
Mayo said some Smart City projects are complete while others are in progress or part of future plans.
Portable life packs used by EMS-certified members of the Monroe Fire Department, the SCADA system that monitors sewer and storm water pump stations and the upgrading of city light systems from fluorescent bulbs to LEDs to save $31,000 per year in energy costs were examples of completed efforts.
The portable life packs and energy-saving initiatives were funded through various grant programs.
In the future, the city plans to utilize a free water app to help citizens better monitor their water use and receive advance notification of excess usage. The app would allow customers to monitor water consumption by the hour and utilizes the capabilities of the city’s smart water meters.
“Being a 21st century city is about combining technology, information and civic engagement to make our city better,” Mayo said.
Other future plans include a pilot program to turn community centers into service hubs where bill payments can be accepted and after-school tutoring, adult education and health screenings accessed.
In his annual address, Mayo also discussed ongoing projects like the construction of a new fire station at Breard Street, the implementation of a school safety app in Monroe City Schools, Monroe’s participation in the Ouachita Strong flood resiliency plan and ongoing flood control efforts.
Mayo also repeated his support for a new arena, stating the city needs to mirror the 21st century approach taken for airport improvements, public safety and drainage.
“We need a 21st century entertainment district in the city of Monroe,” Mayo said. “We are a major city in this state, and all of the major cities, they have passed us up now. It’s time to work together to get this outstanding facility in our community. I have a three word solution — downtown event center.”
Mayo said an event center would help secure Monroe’s future as the entertainment hub of northeast Louisiana.
“If we don’t build a new arena, one of our surrounding neighbors will, pulling events, entertainment and tax dollars out of our city,” Mayo said. He also added the current Civic Center would become a ghost town just as the horse pavilion has become.
Mayo said a community meeting will take place in the next several weeks to allow more people to see a presentation regarding the arena plans.
Autor(en)/Author(s): Ashley Mott
Quelle/Source: The News Star, 14.02.2020