Tag Archives: Benevilla

October 13, 2016 • Newsletter

Bell Road/Grand Avenue Update

The Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) continues to issue weekly project updates for the Bell Road/Grand Avenue bridge project. Bell Road will remain closed between 134th Avenue and West Point Parkway until November 22, pending weather conditions and other unforeseen factors that may affect the target date.

Work continues as follows:

  • Installation of new median on Bell Road east of Grand Avenue.
  • Installation of sidewalk and hand railing on new bridge.
  • Reconstruction of eastbound Grand Avenue.
  • Construction of retaining wall panels on the bridge over Grand Avenue.

**City, County, and State law enforcement will be patrolling the area. Please obey all traffic signage and posted speed limits.**

As always, please allow plenty of time and observe all traffic control signs and barricades. Thank you again for your patience during this project. For more information, please visit the project website at www.azdot.gov/bellandgrand or you can contact ADOT’s project hotline at 855.712.8530, press option #1.


Events & Meetings

West-MEC Northwest Campus Groundbreaking

The Western Maricopa Education Center (West-MEC) hosted a groundbreaking for their Northwest Campus located on Grand Avenue and Dysart Road on Thursday, October 6. West-MEC was created to help students find a faster way forward in life through career and technical education. West-MEC serves over 29,000 students within their 46 member district high schools. The graduation rate for students who complete a CTE program was 98% compared to 76% for all students in Arizona.

The Surprise campus will feature adaptable learning environments, global academic collisions, storm water movement, high efficient building systems, diverse programs and a reduction of the carbon footprint. Anticipated programs include cosmetology, IT security, law, public safety and security, medical assisting and additional health, physical therapy technician, automotive and industrial trades.

Project Appreciation

Councilwoman Rachel Villanueva and I donated pizzas to the Bell Road/Grand Avenue construction team on Thursday, October 6 to show our gratitude for their continued hard work as they work diligently to complete the bridge construction so Bell Road can re-open on the anticipated target date of November 22, 2016.

Councilmembers Hall and Villanueva handing out pizza to Bell and Grand construction workers

Kingswood Place – City Update

City staff and I attended a meeting at Kingswood Place, a senior living community in Surprise, to provide a city update which included a summary of the Surprise Forward campaign and an economic development update. Thank you to the staff who attended!

Benevilla Retirement Celebration

Benevilla hosted a retirement celebration for Michelle Dionisio on Thursday, October 6 at Birt’s Bistro. Many business and community leaders from throughout the Valley attended the event including Councilwoman Rachel Villanueva and me. For more than 25 years, President and CEO Michelle Dionisio has served Benevilla and built it into the multigenerational non-profit organization it is today. She is a well-respected leader who has left an indelible mark not only in our city and the valley, but in our state.

Bell Road-Grand Avenue Business Outreach Meeting

City staff and representation from Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) hosted their monthly outreach meeting at City Hall on Tuesday, October 11. Economic Development provided an update on the Bell/Grand community outreach and education initiative. An employment workshop will be held on Monday, October 31 at the Communiversity followed by an employer workshop on Tuesday, November 1 and a career fair on November 2. More information will soon follow.

The Business Education Series will continue. The next event will be held on October 25 at the Surprise Regional Chamber of Commerce. The topic is “How to grow your business by ensuring your customers are getting the right message.”

ADOT gave an update on the Phase 3C map and project activities. Currently, the project team is putting up street lights on the bride; paving activities on the ramps and bridge center will start this month and continue thru early November.

An overnight closure of Grand Ave between Dysart and Litchfield roads is tentatively scheduled for the first week in November (Friday 11/4 & Saturday 11/5) to place fencing and paint the bridge. Specific dates and activities will be sent in the ADOT project weekly update that precedes the closure.

When Bell Rd reopens on November 22, Grand Ave will be inaccessible from the Bell Rd bridge. The signal at the Bell Rd and Grand Ave intersection will be inactive until the ramps open in early 2017.

The designated detour route that reflects the opening of Bell Rd has been drafted and is under final review. East-west through movements will resume on Bell Rd however drivers will need to use Bell-Reems/ Bell-Dysart to access Grand Ave. Signage along the designated detour route will be changed so drivers are aware they no longer need to use Greenway Road. Lane striping and signals will be modified at the Bell-Litchfield and Bell-Dysart intersections.

Work continues on eastbound Grand Ave lanes through early 2017.

The Business Stakeholder Meeting in November will be postponed to Tuesday, December 13 due to the November 8 Election Day.


Mark Your Calendar

Surprise Fiesta Grande Celebration – This Weekend

The Surprise Fiesta Grande is here! The festivities are scheduled for Saturday, October 15 from 3 pm until 9 pm on Hollyhock Street, north of Grand Avenue. Admission and parking are free.

Fiesta Grande parking map

The line-up is as follows:

  • 3 -3:15 p.m. – DJ/Opening Welcome
  • 3:15-4 p.m. – Mariachi Los Caballeros
  • 4:15-5 p.m. – Ballet Folklorico – Fiesta Mexicana Dance
  • 5:15-6 p.m. – Mariachi Rubor
  • 6:15-7 p.m. – Grupo Caribe
  • 7:15-8 p.m. – Banada La Llegadora
  • 8:15-9 p.m. – Powerdrive

We hope to see you there!

Surprise Veteran Job Club Meeting

The Surprise Veteran Job Club will host their next meeting on October 20 from 6 until 7:30 pm at the Surprise Resource Center located at 12425 W. Bell Road, Suite 124. These meetings are an excellent opportunity to provide veterans, active military and their family members with industry and career pathway knowledge to help them gain the skills they need to pursue a new career or obtain a job.


Did You Know?

Surprise Police Explorer Wins Top Honors

Earlier this month, the Surprise Police Department Explorer Post #2236 competed in the Southern Arizona Law Enforcement Explorer Competition which was held in Marana, Arizona. The post participated in over 15 different events which included: traffic stops, bus assaults, white collar crime investigations, officer down rescue, tactical tracking operations, and an active shooter scenario. They competed against posts from all across Arizona and California.

Explorer Post #2236 represented the Surprise Police Department and City of Surprise exceptionally well. The Explorer Post brought home seven trophies and one medal. The trophies/medal they received were:

  • 3rd place in the team obstacle course (Medal)
  • 2nd place in the use of force scenario
  • 2nd place in white collar crime investigations
  • 1st place in report writing and courtroom testimony
  • 1st place in traffic stops
  • 1st place in bus assaults
  • 1st place overall
  • The Southern Arizona Law Enforcement Explorer Competition Cup for the overall best team at the competition

For more information about the Surprise Police Department Explorer Post #2236 please visit: https://www.surpriseaz.gov/1101/Explorers-Program.

Explorer Post #2236 winners represented the Surprise Police Department
Pictured from left to right: Explorer Peter Phillips, Explorer Davis Wright, Explorer Cesar Chavez, Officer Nate Miller (background), Explorer Mycala Anderson, Officer Jennifer Boothe (background), Explorer Breonna Colon, Explorer Gilber Chavez, Explorer Trey Williams, Explorer Clayton Bailey

Contact Me

Office: 623.222.1325
Mobile: 623.451.3975
Email: skip.hall@surpriseaz.gov

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September 15, 2016 • Newsletter

Bell Road/Grand Avenue Update

The Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) continues to issue weekly project updates for the Bell Road/Grand Avenue bridge project.

Work continues as follows:

  • Eastbound Grand Avenue is being reconstructed.
  • Construction of the retaining wall panels on the bridge over Grand Avenue will continue for the next few months.

**City, County, and State law enforcement will be patrolling the area. Please obey all traffic signage and posted speed limits.**

As always, please allow plenty of time and observe all traffic control signs and barricades. Thank you again for your patience during this project. For more information, please visit the project website at www.azdot.gov/bellandgrand or you can contact ADOT’s project hotline at 855.712.8530, press option #1.

Bell & Grand Business Stakeholders Outreach Meeting

The City and ADOT hosted a monthly Business Stakeholders Outreach meeting on Tuesday, September 13. Councilmembers Rachel Villanueva, Roland Winters, Todd Tande and I attended along with staff and business representatives. Economic Development provided on update on outreach and education initiatives and ADOT provided a project update.

ADOT’s Assistant Communication Director Brock Barnhart introduced Phase 3C (see map below) of the project where Bell Rd reopens; a specific target date will be presented at the September 20 City Council meeting. The goal is to open all three lanes of Bell Rd in late November.

ADOT Bell & Grand Phase 3C slide

Due to continued work on tie-ins, there may be occasional curb lane restrictions and overnight work on Bell Rd after the reopening. The project team will work hard to ensure that at least two lanes in each direction remain open on Bell Rd during daytime work.

When Bell Rd reopens, Grand Ave will be inaccessible from the Bell Rd bridge and vice versa. The signal at the Bell Rd and Grand Ave intersection will be inactive until the ramps open in early 2017. A signal at the intersection of 134th Ave and Bell Rd will be up and operational.

Reconfiguration of the designated detour route to reflect the opening of Bell Road is under review. East-west through movements will resume on Bell Road, however drivers will still need to use Bell-Litchfield/ Bell-Dysart to access Grand Ave. Signage along the designated detour route will be changed so drivers are aware they no longer need to use Greenway Road. Lane striping and signals will be modified at the Bell-Litchfield and Bell-Dysart intersections.

Work continues on eastbound Grand Ave lanes through early 2017.

Now that deck pours have been completed on the BNSF bridge, ADOT does not anticipate any major Grand Ave closures until mid-October.

ShopSurprise has sent 171,000 messages to date and more than 25 businesses have participated. There has been 3,100 opt-in and 35 email subscribers as well. The Economic Development department plans to develop a direct marketing campaign to draw Sun City consumers back to Surprise. The department recently won the Gold Prospector Award, Multi-media Production at the Arizona Association of Economic Developers for their efforts on the ShopSurprise campaign. Congratulations to our amazing team!

The city hosted a job fair in August with 13 employers present. Approximately 100 job seekers also took advantage of the fair. Another employment workshop is being planned for late October. Additionally, another career fair and business information session will occur in November. More details will soon follow!


Events & Meetings

AZ STEM School Community of Practice Meeting

As part of the team representing our local STEM school, Canyon Ridge, Dr. Shelley Isai and I joined staff from Canyon Ridge and several other representatives from STEM schools at Grand Canyon University on September 8. Maricopa County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Don Covey and Provost for Grand Canyon University Dr. Hank Radda joined us. Breakout topics included discussions on barriers, solutions and commitments schools are facing. Opportunities to meet with representatives from any of the 44 STEM schools participating were available to those who took part in the meeting.

Grand Opening of Benevilla’s Helping Partners Program

The Helping Partners Program, run by local nonprofit Benevilla, has moved into a space at City Hall. To welcome the program, a grand opening ceremony took place on Monday, September 12, followed by a tour of the office space. Councilmembers Rachel Villanueva, Roland Winters, Todd Tande and I joined city staff and Benevilla representatives, including CEO Michelle Dionisio and program participants.

The Helping Partners Life Enrichment Program was designed for adults with intellectual or development challenges. The program provides volunteer and employment opportunities that enable members to contribute in their respective communities.

Councilmembers Hall, Villanueva, Winters & Tande with city staff and Benevilla representatives, including CEO Michelle Dionisio and program participants.

Surprise Tourism Advisory Commission Meeting

I attended the Surprise Tourism Advisory Commission meeting on Tuesday, September 13. Agenda items included an update on sports tourism and future baseball tournaments and a discussion pertaining to the Western Heritage Trail Society. Western Heritage Trail Society is an association striving to develop, promote and showcase events, programs and destinations truly unique to our beautiful State.

Annual Fiscal Year Water Resource Management Meeting

On Wednesday, September 14, the Water Resource Management Department held its Annual New Fiscal Year (FY) Kick-off All Hands Lunch for staff. The intent of the lunch is to give staff an opportunity to reflect on FY16 accomplishments through presentations made by division managers that recognize outstanding performers and provide staff with a look at what the department will be doing in FY17. Director Terry Lowe thanked everyone for coming and reminded his staff about the keys to a successful business: People… Processes… Product. This philosophy has led to the completion of the new Gateway Training Center and the successful coordination and teamwork in the commencement and completion of nearly a dozen other major projects. The training center, which will have its Grand Opening on October 26, is the place where staff will broaden its knowledge and understanding of their careers and assist the department in better serving the community. The department’s division managers: Lee Lambert, Water; Warren Dancer, Wastewater; Christine Nunez, Environmental Compliance; Paul Mohr, Business Process; and Fred Stevens, Resource Portfolio, each gave those in attendance a little deeper look into the work they do, their teams, and their initiatives for next year.


Mark Your Calendar

Movie Night at Surprise Stadium

Movie Night will be held at Surprise Stadium on Saturday, September 17 featuring “Hotel Transylvania 2” (Rated PG). The event is sponsored by Coulter Nissan in Surprise, and admission is free!

Gates open at 6 p.m., and the movie starts at 7 p.m. Bring your blankets and pillows and stretch out on the grass at Surprise Stadium, located at 15850 N Bullard Ave. The stadium food and beverage policy is in effect. Concessions will be available for purchase. Ice chests and lawn chairs are not permitted.

For more information, please contact Community and Recreation Services at 623.222.2000.

CPR Classes Offered

The Surprise Fire-Medical Department will be offering free Continuous Chest Compression Only-CPR (CCC-CPR) classes on Wednesday, September 21.

CCC-CPR consists of continuous aggressive chest compressions to keep the victim’s blood circulating through their brain and heart, which has been proven to increase survival rates. And, because it does not require mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, it reduces the risk of spreading viruses or other kinds of disease between the life-saver and victim.

Two sessions will be held. The morning class will run from 9-11 a.m., and the afternoon class will run from 2-4 p.m.; both will be held in the Public Safety Building Auditorium, located at 14250 W. Statler Plaza. To register for a class, please email crfire@surpriseaz.gov or call 623.222.5400.

Mental Health Advocacy Event

Author and mental health advocate Erin Callinan will take part in an event, “Beautifully Bipolar – From Trauma to Triumph,” at the Communiversity on September 26, 2016 from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. The event will include a panel discussion with Erin’s family, mental health resource tables and a book signing. Erin will share her personal journey of finding hope after her mental illness diagnosis at the age of 17.


Did You Know?

Veteran’s Day Art Show

Are you a veteran with artistic talent? The city is seeking veteran-produced artwork for inclusion in an art show display during its Veterans Day Celebration on November 11. Professional and amateur artists are invited to display at this event. Paintings, photography, sculpture, illustrations or any other medium is welcome; there is no charge to participate. Interested artists should contact Arts and Cultural Advisory Commission Chair, Susan deJong, at 623.214.7537 or sandbapple@msn.com.

The artwork will be on display from 8-11 a.m. in front of Surprise Stadium, located at 15960 N. Bullard Ave. In addition to the art show, the city’s Veterans Day celebration includes a parade that will begin at 9:30 a.m. and run along Bullard Avenue near Surprise Stadium. Both the art show and parade are free to attend.

For $4, you can enjoy a pancake breakfast at the stadium before the parade from 7-9 a.m. Tickets can be purchased in advance from the Community and Recreation Services Office, located at the stadium.

Learn more about the Veterans Day Celebration at www.surpriseaz.gov/specialevents.


Contact Me

Office: 623.222.1325
Mobile: 623.451.3975
Email: skip.hall@surpriseaz.gov

Ask a Question

May 1, 2015 • Newsletter

Events & Meetings


Ribbon Cutting
I attended the Farmer’s Insurance-Boyle Agency ribbon cutting at the Gateway to Surprise Business Suites (11503 W. Bell Road) on Monday, April 27. Several residents and members of the Surprise Regional Chamber of Commerce were present.

Farmers Insurance Boyle Agency
Farmers Insurance Boyle Agency Ribbon Cutting

 

Committee on Water Resource Planning Meeting
The Committee on Water Resource Planning met on Wednesday, April 29. Director of Water Resource Management Terry Lowe provided an overview of the Water Resource Strategic Vision Policy presentation that he will present to the City Council on May 19, 2015 for consideration and approval of the water policies that were provided to Council over the course of several months. The Committee unanimously agreed to recommend these policies to the entire City Council.

Maricopa Community College East Valley Veterans Center Tour
Mayor Wolcott, Human Service and Community Vitality Director Michael Celaya, City Manager Bob Wingenroth and I toured the Maricopa Community College East Valley Veterans Center on Thursday, April 30. As part of the tour, we discussed partnership development that will help deliver resources to our Veterans.

Did You Know?


Surprise Community Garden is Growing!
Benevilla, a West Valley nonprofit human services agency located in Surprise, announced that Rebuilding Together and DMB are providing new features and accessibility upgrades in the Surprise Community Garden, a Community of All Ages project at Benevilla. Currently, the organic garden has 100 gardeners working on 34 raised-soil beds.

Rebuilding Together, a national nonprofit, and local Valley builder DMB join together once a year to select one Valley community project they would like to support. This year, representatives discovered and selected the Community Garden.

Benevilla was started in the community in 1981. The organization is dedicated to enhancing the lives of West Valley residents by providing care services for older adults, intellectually disabled adults, children and families.

Mark Your Calendar


Surprise Safety Day
Surprise Safety Day will be held from 8 am – 11 am on Saturday, May 2 at the Surprise Aquatic Center, 15831 N. Bullard Avenue. The event will feature free swim lesson assessments, water safety skits, CPR demonstrations, safety vehicle tours by Surprise Police and Fire-Medical Departments, McGruff the Crime Dog, car seat and bike helmet inspections. The Surprise Aquatic staff, Police and Fire will be on-site to answer questions regarding water safety and prevention, as well as vehicle and fire safety.

For more information about Surprise Safety Day, please call 623.222.2000.

Surprise City Hall to host Job Fair
Six companies will be recruiting for open positions on Friday, May 8 at Surprise City Hall (16000 N. Civic Center Plaza). The companies participating in the job fair include Cobalt Medical Development (Surprise location will open in late 2015), Empereon Marketing, Gestamp Solar, Intrepid Tools, Rio Glass Solar and Winco. The job fair will take place from 8 am until 12 noon in the Mayor’s Atrium.

For more information, please contact Economic Development Coordinator Julie Neal at 623.222.3322.

NCAA 2015 Tennis Championships
The City of Surprise will be hosting the 2015 NCAA Tennis Championships May 13 through May 16 at the Surprise Tennis & Racquet Complex, 14469 W. Paradise. For more information, please call 623.222.2400 or visit www.surpriseaz.gov/tennis.

Contact Me


Shop Surprise

Office: 623.222.1325
Mobile: 623.451.3975
Email: skip.hall@surpriseaz.gov

Ask a Question