SAN DIEGO (CNS) - Interim Mayor Todd Gloria and Councilman Mark Kersey said Wednesday that an assessment of the condition of sidewalks around San Diego is gearing up -- a major opening step in attempts by city officials to reduce a massive backlog of infrastructure projects.
Employees and college students are training and testing equipment for the study now, and will hit the streets by the end of the month, according to Kersey's office.
"This is the first time the city has ever conducted a comprehensive assessment of its 5,000 miles of public sidewalks," Kersey told City News Service. "It will take about a year to complete. But when it's done, we'll be able to put a price tag on the needed repairs."
Projecting the cost is critical because city officials are uncertain of the ultimate bill for repairing San Diego's sidewalks, roadways, public buildings and other municipal facilities. Educated guesses from Kersey and other city officials range north of $900 million and could top $1 billion.
City officials also want to know where sidewalks are needed but don't currently exist.
"Ultimately, we want to make San Diego a more walkable community, like creating safe routes to schools," Kersey said.
City officials also plan to assess the condition of municipal buildings.
Results from both studies are expected to be made available near the end of this year.
According to a presentation last summer to the City Council's Infrastructure Committee, which is chaired by Kersey, the sidewalk study will be conducted by two civil engineers and two dozen student engineering interns who will walk around the city carrying handheld GPS devices.
The San Diego Rescue Mission opened its doors to the homeless community on Saturday for its annual Thanksgiving celebration.
A man died after his body caught fire, police said Saturday. At 11:30 p.m. Friday, police received a call regarding a person on fire in a field near 5200 Pacific Highway in Mission Bay Park, according to the San Diego Police Department.
Hoping for the best but preparing for the worst, local business owners and first responders teamed up for an all-to-real feeling hazard drill on Saturday.
A 5-year-old girl who was abducted from New York by her 32-year-old mother, who does not have custody of the child, was found safe Saturday in San Diego, police said.
Before Saturday, Marine veteran Joshua Ray, his wife and six children had just one vehicle to use for all of their family business, and Ray had to take the train from Oceanside to San Diego every day to get to work.
A sea of pink will travel through San Diego starting Friday for the Susan G. Komen San Diego 3-Day. The 60 mile journey kicks off early Friday morning and ends Sunday evening at the final destination – the celebratory Closing Ceremony.
A man arrested on suspicion of committing a murder in Imperial Beach earlier this week remained jailed Saturday.
Spencer Abbott had two goals and two assists after missing two games and Eric Fehr scored twice in his debut with the San Diego Gulls in an 8-3 victory over the Tucson Roadrunners Friday night.
On Friday, a fourth woman came forward with disturbing allegations of sexual assault by a San Diego County Sheriff’s Deputy.
Malcolm Young, the rhythm guitarist and guiding force behind the bawdy hard rock band AC/DC who helped create such head-banging anthems as "Highway to Hell," ''Hell's Bells" and "Back in Black," has died.