LARGO — The City Commission approved spending an estimated $253,975 for three separate projects March 3.

Spending approvals include $150,475 in engineering fees to George F. Young, Inc. for final design engineering services for a segment of Largo’s Community Streets Network project that covers 20th Street Northwest from West Bay Drive to Ezelle Avenue.

The project is part of Largo’s strategic plan to establish a system of community streets and expand trails and greenways.

The road network is to connect to parks, neighborhoods, and attractions and to accommodate pedestrians, cyclists, other recreational users, and automobile traffic.

The 20th Street Northwest segment aims to provide a connection from Mehlenbacher Road/Eighth Avenue Northwest to West Bay Drive, the city’s upcoming connection to the Pinellas Trail, and downtown Largo.

To be designed in fiscal year 2020 and built in fiscal year 2021, the project will include pavement, pedestrian, bicycle, sidewalk, stormwater infrastructure and water quality improvements.

Commissioner John Carroll asked Largo senior engineer Barry Westmark whether this project would also help alleviate potential stormwater overflow in the area in the event of severe rain.

“During the design process, we will evaluate the drainage conditions to see if there is anything that we can do along 20th,” Westmark said. “If it is closer to the intersection of West Bay and 20th, we will work with the county, when the county comes along in a few years to do those improvements. But this will give us a good idea of what kind of (water) conveyance capacity that we will need for our project.”

Reimbursements

The commission also approved an ordinance to appropriate $50,000 from this fiscal year’s budget to complete annexation liability agreements for properties along Lake Avenue, Southwind Lane, and Cherry Road due to the city’s Lake Avenue sewer expansion project.

Largo’s annexation of these properties has created an estimated $8.6 million in new taxable value for the city, official said.

The annexation agreements provided property owners an incentive by reimbursing the sewer impact fee cost.

Largo’s sewer expansion project was completed in December 2018.

Since then, Largo property owners in the area have been connecting to the new sewer line and claiming reimbursements.

Remaining reimbursement payouts for the sewer expansion project are expected to exceed the city’s budgeted amount, officials said.

Down the road

Commissioners also approved $53,500 in spending for professional planning services for the Clearwater-Largo Road Community Redevelopment District.

The expansion includes an additional 843 acres, including the Missouri Avenue corridor, and to establish a tax increment financing district.

The CLR-CRD expansion was originally proposed but placed on hold in 2016, pending Pinellas County approval of a 15-year review of the West Bay Drive Community Redevelopment District.

The county approval is the first step in obtaining delegation of redevelopment authority from the Pinellas County Commission to expand the district.

The item gets a second reading at the commission’s March 17 meeting.

Settlement

Commissioners approved a $100,000 settlement agreement between the city of Largo and Daniel and Nancy Mayes, owners of Ameri Truck Sales, LLC for outstanding code enforcement liens of $304,100 assessed against the applicant for its property at 9020 Ulmerton Road.

The Mayeses' attorney contacted Largo’s attorney’s office on Feb. 3 with a $100,000 settlement offer to cover all existing code case liens, which the city accepted.

Largo originally filed a code enforcement case against Ameri Truck Sales in 2006 for performing work without permits, issuing a $257,500 fine.

Largo brought a new case against Ameri Truck Sales in 2007 for developing the property without obtaining a development order from the city, issuing a $43,000 fine.

In 2010, Largo filed another code enforcement case against the company for an abandoned and derelict sign violation, issuing a $3,600 fine.

A change in ownership of Ameri Truck Sales occurred in 2010, and the property was redeveloped and is currently in compliance. However, liens against the Mayes remained.