October 22, 2021

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COVID glimpse-back again, infrastructure milestones mark mayor’s initially Condition of the Metropolis | Community Information

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ENID, Okla. — Enid Mayor George Pankonin marked his to start with State of the Metropolis tackle by thanking Enid’s residents for performing their section to set COVID-19 in the rear-perspective mirror.

“We always stayed concentrated on guarding the community not only from the ailment but from financial impacts on region companies,” he mentioned. “There was under no circumstances a conclusion that would make anyone satisfied, so we retained our aim on what was ideal, not what was perfect.”


Enid mayor seems to be back again on stages of pandemic over the very last 12 months in the city

Pankonin reported in hindsight, he believes the elected leaders of Enid Town Commission produced the right calls at the time, but mentioned, “Not anyone will agree with me.”

The city’s ban on huge, non-distanced gatherings also obtained in the way of his strategies for far more town hall conferences, but Pankonin reported he intends to maintain the so-referred to as “coming attractions” in each individual ward later this calendar year right after assembly with fellow city commissioners.

Standing atop a riser at the entrance of Stride Bank Center’s Grand Ballroom, Pankonin led the celebration of Enid’s achievements on Tuesday, 786 times given that he was sworn in as the city’s 47th mayor.

City personnel, group leaders and commissioners both previous and existing were in attendance as Pankonin coated the city’s successes and highlights from the two 2019 and 2020.

“As I search all around this space, I’m reminded of what would make Enid the place to stay. It is the folks,” he mentioned. “Enid is really boundless, vibrant and primary.”

‘Paving our way’

Pankonin also touted the the latest improvements to Enid’s infrastructure and water units, including the city’s Kaw Lake Water Source software.

“During the past two decades, the city experienced designed fantastic strides in infrastructure and advancements throughout the group. We are absolutely paving our way,” he mentioned.

The 70-mile pipeline from the reservoir dam, in development considering the fact that 2014, is set to deliver the city with 10.5 million gallons of clean h2o a day.

Commissioners this earlier 12 months equally picked a construction supervisor at-danger and established a assured optimum selling price of $243 million. The metropolis also has acquired most of the essential environmental permits and governmental approvals, and has acquired 230 land parcels.

The task is now starting off development on accessibility roadways at its intake site, Pankonin explained, and metropolis engineer workers mentioned they are arranging $20 million of money improvements in the future fiscal yr.

Town engineers have led rebuilds of numerous main metropolis streets, such as at Kennedy, West Maple and West Oklahoma. Mill and overlay projects were accomplished on Broadway from Washington to Van Buren and on College from Randolph to Maine, as was the widening of the Cleveland-Chestnut intersection.

Also in 2019 and 2020, town street crews loaded a overall 25,000 potholes, graded 1,890 miles of highway, laid over 600 tons of asphalt and swept 3,240 miles of Enid roadways.

Immediately after Enid targeted traffic workers shadowed Stillwater’s staff, the metropolis upgraded its visitors management application to maximize visitors move, in accordance to the town. Crews also put in new visitors controls devices together Garriott and Van Buren, as effectively as a detection method at U.S. 412 and 42nd.

Neighborhood partnerships

Pankonin hyped the city’s extensive-time period relationships with the community — this sort of as that with Vance Air Pressure Foundation, personal organizations and the community faculty system — as a single of the city’s greatest successes.

“Our group is not operate by 1 particular person (the mayor) or even a little group of persons (the fee),” he reported, “it can take the concerted attempts of all of us.”

The city’s Meadowlake Golfing Training course companions with space golfing crew businesses, though Community Library of Enid and Garfield County is capable to run its Lunch Bunch application with help from Enid’s Loaves & Fishes food items lender and Regional Meals Bank of Oklahoma.

The city allocates all-around $30,000 a calendar year for instructional and work scholarships for spouses of Vance staff. Vance airmen, in the meantime, provide their community in church, on boards or as a result of neighborhood services.

Some cleanse a 10-mile portion of Enid’s Adopt-a-Freeway, even though other airmen clean city parks when a thirty day period on their very own time.

On Memorial Day, the city in change renamed two streets around Vance’s entrances in honor of the two pilots who died in a airplane crash in 2019.

Pankonin himself retired from lively obligation as a big from the Air Pressure in 1994 right before performing as a logistics supervisor for a number of protection contractors at Vance. On entire retirement, he stayed in Enid with his wife, Melody, a university liaison for the base.

In 2019, Enid was rated the ideal metropolis to reside in in Oklahoma, in accordance to ChamberofCommerce.org. It also was named the finest location to reside in in Oklahoma on a $50,000 income by MSN.

“I love residing in Enid — it was just a issue of time in advance of other people figured out that Enid is the put to be,” Pankonin explained.