From the City Manager's Desk

October 8, 2018

Team Up to Clean Up Central Park 

Team Up to Clean Up was a great success in the Central Park neighborhood. In July and August volunteers and City of Topeka departments helped to improve the area. Various city departments completed 935 services, dedicated approximately 1,563 hours of staff time and reallocated resources of approximately $392,825, which includes dollars allocated towards street work, to the area over this period of time. There was an incredible amount of work that went on in the Central Park Neighborhood during this time.
Check out the hard work put in during Team Up to Clean Up:
Take a look at how the property maintenance division works to improve our community.

Technical Support Group Division Manager, Brandon Bayless, Selected for Prestigious APWA Emerging Leaders Academy

Brandon Bayless, TSG Manager, was selected out of 200 applicants as one of 17 to participate in the 2018-2019 Emerging Leaders Academy sponsored by the American Public Works Association.
The Emerging Leaders Academy is a year-long national program. It provides intensive leadership and management training within the context of public works. It encourages professional growth through a strong network of peers, and offers an in-depth introduction to APWA at the national, chapter and branch levels.
Brandon will attend an ELA retreat in Kansas City Missouri in late October to network with other professionals to learn and discuss current and trending topics in Public Works. The training will culminate late next summer in Seattle where Brandon and fellow classmates will present their class project to attendees of the APWA PWX Conference in Seattle, Washington.

Tiger Cam

The Topeka Zoo is expecting tiger cubs any time now. You can see Jingga the tiger on the Topeka Zoo's tiger camera's as she prepares to give birth. 

Food For Fines

The City of Topeka Municipal Court will start a Food for Fines program during the month of October. Any person with a payment due to the Municipal Court between October 1st and October 31st will receive a $25 credit towards their fine with a donation of ten cans of non-perishable canned goods.
All the non-perishable food items that are collected will be donated to Project Topeka.
The food donations allow for a one-time max credit of $25 for each case. The Food for Fines program only allows for credit in cases with payments being made with the court and not in collections. The program cannot be used for court costs, diversion fees, reinstatement fees, restitution or seat-belt tickets.
Cans must be taken to the Municipal Court Clerk’s office to receive credit. Dented, rusted, non-labeled, or expired food items will not be accepted.
For more information, please call the Municipal Court at (785) 368-3776.

1/2 Cent Sales Tax Renewal 

In the general election in November there will be a ballot item to renew the current 1/2 cent sales tax. 
The 1/2 cent sales tax funds 52% of the forecasted $24 million spent each year on street projects. 
The citywide sales tax program uses about $14 million raised annually through a 0.5 percent retailers’ tax, also known as a sales tax. The funds are used exclusively for costs of maintenance and improvements of existing City of Topeka streets, gutters, curbs, sidewalks, alleys and street lighting.
Learn more about street projects, preventative maintenance and investing in Topeka's infrastructure here:
The City Manager’s Office, Public Works and Finance are partnering to present to groups of citizens about the Citywide Half Cent Sales Tax renewal. If a group would like to request a presentation, please contact Molly Hadfield at or (785) 368-0991. 

Road Construction Update

The image on the right is a list of featured road construction projects for 2018. 

Work continuing on: 
  • SW Gage between 21st and 25th. Asphalt has been laid in the southbound lanes; asphalt will go down in the northbound lanes beginning Friday, Oct. 5, weather permitting.
  • Contractor completed mill and overlay work on SW 17th between Fairlawn and Arrowhead this week.
  • SE Adams between 29th and 33rd.  Contractor placed concrete on the outside two lanes between 29th and the Post Office this week.
  • 21st and Kansas.  Permanent signal poles were installed this week. 
  • 29th and Burlingame.  Contractor finished the southeast quadrant and began the final phase (NE quadrant).  Permanent signal pole delivery is scheduled for late October to early November.
  • SW 29th at Fairlawn –Contractor began pavement removal this week.
  • SW Fairlawn between 28th and 29th.  Contractor working with the design engineer and utility companies.
  • One alley project is underway.
  • Base patching and mill/overlay project in the area of NW Menninger Rd, NW Sproaton, NW Sanford and NW Walnut started this week.
  • SW 6th between Fairlawn and Gage.   Sod going in and final concrete work is nearing completion.   Final lift of asphalt and striping to follow.
  • SW Huntoon at Arvonia.  Concrete pavement was placed on hill along with retaining walls.  Project is really taking shape.
Street Project Startup and Major Phase Changes:
  • SW 29th – Fairlawn to I-470 will start in October.

 Recent Updates 

  • Topeka Fire Department Training Division staff participated in an initial meeting hosted by the State of Kansas on the development of a new level of wildfire training curriculum for all the fire service of the state. This course will become the standard of what is taught across the state for all fire service members.
  • The street division used 180 tons of hot mix asphalt for pothole and full-depth patching work and eight tons for filling 628 potholes.
  • Utilities Pipe was installed at 545 NW Menninger RD to work with a Street Division road repair project.

Landlord Expo 

The City of Topeka is proud to host our 1st Landlord Expo. The 2018 Topeka Landlord Expo is the most informative landlord event of its kind in the Midwest potentially attracting over 1,000 potential visitors. It will provide an excellent platform for property investors to seek the advice, guidance and tools necessary to succeed in the development and management of their rental property businesses.
Our purpose is simple. We want to provide landlords with the advice, tools and knowledge needed to be successful, and we want tenants to have decent, safe and affordable homes in safe neighborhoods.
The Expo is the perfect partner whether you are a first time or accidental landlord, an agent, property investor, managing an existing portfolio, or considering entering the private rental market. The key features of the Expo include over 80 exhibitors ranging from suppliers to professional advisers and local authorities and an action packed timetable of FREE workshops.
For more information call the Neighborhood Relations Department at (785) 368-4470

Neglected Building Registration Survey 

Below is a link to a brief survey regarding the proposed neglected building registration. We would appreciate your assistance getting the word out so we can get as much public input back on the proposed program as possible.


The E-Cycle event for recycling electronics will take place on Saturday, October 20th from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. 
Bring your used, unused, working or not working electronics for free recycling. 
CRT Monitors will cost $15 to recycle if they are 19" or smaller. 
CRT TVs will cost $30 if they are 20" or larger. 

Coming up

  • City Council Meeting, October 9th at 6 p.m. 
  • E-Cycle, October 20th at the Expo Centre
  • 2018 Topeka Landlord Expo, Saturday, October 27th, 9AM-3PM
  • Topeka Fire Department is will be hosting its annual Open House and Fallen Firefighter Memorial on October 13th between 1:00 and 4:00 at the Fire Department Headquarters.
  • Neighborhood Relations Citizen’s Advisory Council 1st Annual Neighborhood Celebration, Oct 27th, 11AM-6PM

Brent Trout 

This weekly report is presented to you from the office of City Manager Brent Trout.
This report was produced through our open data portal. We have several other open data portals to help connect you with the work we do, including portals that let you: