Overland Park approves $450K for repairs at Blue Valley fueling site for city vehicles

The Overland Park Public Works Committee has approved more funding toward various repairs at the Blue Valley Maintenance Facility's fueling system for city vehicles. Image from city of Overland Park Twitter

Efforts to fix ongoing issues at Overland Park’s Blue Valley Maintenance Facility at 153rd and Metcalf Avenue took a step forward Wednesday as the city’s Public Works Committee approved nearly $450,000 for repairs at the 30-year-old facility’s fueling station for city vehicles. 

What needs fixing: Becky Bonebrake, civil engineer for the city, said the facility has a range of ongoing operation and maintenance issues. 

  • Some of those include a corroded electrical conduit, leaks on fuel pumps and a deteriorating platform. 
  • Bonebrake said there are also steps to take to make the facility more code compliant, accessible and environmentally sustainable. 

Prior leak: In addition to these repairs, Bonebrake said the Kansas Department of Health and Environment is still involved in overseeing a previously repaired leak in the facility’s underground storage tanks. 

  • “The leak has been repaired, but work to remove the tanks and replace the tanks would require remediation of the soils that have been contaminated,” she said. 
  • A portion of the work to be completed now will be able to be reimbursed by the state.

Why it matters: The Blue Valley Maintenance Facility is a key part of the city’s operations, used by all city departments for refueling city vehicles. 

  • Public works director Tony Hofmann said supply chain issues and maintenance shortages have caused costs for the project to go up.
  • “As with numerous recent projects, we’re experiencing price increases given the current state of world affairs supply chain issues and material shortages,” he said. “These continue to impact various projects.” 

Where the committee landed: Despite supporting the project, some members of the committee had questions about the work needed, including the impact of the ongoing phase-in of electric vehicles in the future or whether costs for the project could go down over time. 

  • “I do think that we have to think a little bit like a private business would,” said committee member Jeff Cox. “I think we have to think about all kinds of large construction projects and consider if they aren’t absolutely necessary to do, if we could wait two years to do them. I think it’s worth having a conversation that they might cost less.”
  • The committee ultimately approved the measure unanimously.