Tarrant, Fort Worth, 76006 – ‎76008 – ‎76012 – ‎76013 Archive


   

Permits no longer required for garage sales

For the next year, Fort Worth residents will no longer be required to obtain a permit before hosting a garage sale.

The one-year trial was authorized by the City Council. At the end of the trial period, city staff will evaluate the impact, if any, on compliance complaints. If there is no impact, an ordinance amendment will be brought forward.

The city processes more than 16,000 garage sale permits per year. The change will allow staff to spend more time processing building permits and other high-priority work. The volume of building permits has increased 34 percent to over 13,000 annually since 2012.

Residents must still follow city regulations, which have been in place since 1977:

  • Garage sales are allowed only in residential districts.
  • Each household may hold no more than two sales in a calendar year.
  • New merchandise obtained for the purpose of resale is not permitted.
  • A sale cannot last more than three consecutive days.
  • Only one sign, measuring no more than 2 square feet, is permitted and must be located on the sale property.

Code Compliance already enforces the regulations whether a resident has a permit or not.

To report a garage sale violation, call 817-392-1234.

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Cyclists can provide feedback about experiences at city facilities

Fort Worth is applying for recertification in the Bicycle-Friendly Business program, and residents can help by answering a survey. The survey responses will provide valuable insight into the experiences of existing and potential cyclists who work at or visit city facilities.

The survey will be available through Nov. 10.

In 2013, the League of American Bicyclists recognized the City of Fort Worth with a bronze-level Bicycle-Friendly Business award for leading America toward a greener future.

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Take a walk on the wild side at Cross Timbers Trail

City officials grabbed a pair of loppers and cut a vine — rather than the traditional ribbon — to reopen the Cross Timbers Trail at the Fort Worth Nature Center & Refuge.

Recent work made it possible for the area to be reopened to the public. A levee breach occurred in 1990, and the area was inaccessible to the public until 2004. Several subsequent breaches occurred before the trail was closed altogether in 2015.

The area, also known as Todd Island, is the specific geographic feature that netted the center’s Natural National Landmark designation. It is a 3.5-mile looped trail, portions of which follow an old, unimproved dirt road used in the late 1800s and early 1900s.

The ancient Cross Timbers forest is dominated by post oak trees. Research conducted in the 1980s indicated that some trees were more than 250 years old.

Todd Island was formed as a sandbar along an ancient bend in the West Fork of the Trinity River, which resulted in the deep sandy soils that in turn led to the development of the sand-loving Cross Timbers forest.

Notable wildlife observed on the island includes wild turkey, whitetail deer, opossum, armadillo, pileated woodpecker, and barred and great horned owls.

The Fort Worth Nature Center & Refuge is a hidden wilderness of wetlands, forests and prairies near Lake Worth. At more than 3,600 acres, it is one of the largest known municipally-owned nature centers in the United States. The Nature Center was founded in 1964 with a mission to help educate the community in preserving and protecting natural areas through educational programs.

The center features 20 miles of hiking trails and is home to a resident bison herd and prairie dog town, as well as numerous indigenous wildlife species.

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City’s flood warning system to expand

More people die each year from flooding than from lightning, tornadoes or hurricanes, and nearly half of all flash flood fatalities are vehicle related.

Flooding also affects properties in Fort Worth, where from Jan. 1, 2016, through June 1 of this year, 560 FEMA flood claims were filed for damaged property, and more than $275,000 in claims were paid. That’s why it’s important to have a reliable flood warning system in the most flood-prone areas.

Toward its mission of “protecting people and property from harmful stormwater runoff,” the city’s Stormwater Management staff will meet with residents and stakeholders at a public meeting scheduled for 6 p.m. Nov. 1 at the Hazel Harvey Peace Center for Neighborhoods, 818 Missouri Ave., Room 201, to give an update on progress to the new flood warning system.

The improved flood warning system will use the existing system’s communication infrastructure as much as possible, while making improvements to weather data collection, expand the flood gauge network, add new software, disseminate real-time data to the public and have a flood response plan.

The city’s current flood warning system relies on water level measurements made at 52 low-water crossings throughout the city. Roadside flashers are installed at these locations, to immediately warn drivers of a flood hazard. At the same time, text and email alerts to emergency responders are issued when the water level sensors of each flasher system are triggered from rising water.

A grant from the Texas Water Development Board is providing development support for system improvements, and stormwater utility fees will fund the project, too.

To learn more about the project, contact Ranjan S. Muttiah at 817-392-7919.

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Convoy of Hope rolls into Fort Worth

The Convoy of Hope event is part of a movement aimed at transforming people’s lives, inspiring compassion and service, and bringing people and organizations together.

Make plans to attend the Convoy of Hope on Oct. 28 at Southwest High School, 4100 Altamesa Blvd. Doors open at 10 a.m.

Attendees can receive free groceries, a hot lunch, health screenings, job services, family portraits, haircuts, activities for children and more.

To learn more, call 817-263-5336.

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Sound the alarm about fire safety

The Fort Worth Fire Department and the American Red Cross will conduct a citywide smoke alarm drive from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Oct. 14. Firefighters and volunteers will canvass neighborhoods and install or replace smoke alarms in homes that need them.

The smoke alarms are provided free by First Alert Inc. and the American Red Cross.

Although most people will agree that smoke alarms are a necessity, many people take them for granted. While sleeping, 80-85 percent of people lose their sense of smell and will not detect the smoke in time to escape. Smoke alarms buy extra precious seconds needed to evacuate during a house fire.

During prior smoke alarm drives in Fort Worth, a significant percentage of homes either needed new batteries for their smoke alarms or lacked smoke alarms altogether.

To request a free smoke alarm installation, call 817-928-1384.

If you miss the drive…

Fort Worth Fire will install or replace smoke alarms year-round for Fort Worth residents who are also homeowners. Call 817-392-6862 for assistance.

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Two citywide meetings provide opportunities to learn about upcoming bond election

Over the past few months, public meetings were held in each of the eight council districts to allow residents to learn about the proposed bond projects and provide feedback. Now, two citywide meetings are planned:

  • Oct. 18, 6:30-8:30 p.m., Heritage Church of Christ, 4201 Heritage Trace Parkway.
  • Oct. 23, 6:30-8:30 p.m., Fort Worth Botanic Garden Lecture Hall, 3220 Botanic Garden Blvd.

City staff is recommending that the City Council call for a bond election in May 2018. If approved by voters, the bond package would provide funding to build new roads and repair existing ones, new park amenities and community centers, and public safety facility improvements.

Once all of the community meetings are completed, city staff will revise the proposed project list based on public input and will present the list to the City Council.

Learn more about the proposed projects.

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Get your flu shot, the earlier the better

Local health care workers are reminding residents that it’s never too early to get flu shots. According to Tarrant County Public Health, it takes about two weeks for the flu vaccine to take full effect.

Flu is a contagious disease caused by the influenza virus. It can be spread by coughing, sneezing or nasal secretions. Symptoms usually come on suddenly. Key indicators include fever, cough, sore throat, nasal congestion, headache, body aches and extreme fatigue.

Good hygiene is the first step in stopping the flu.

Fortunately, people can get flu shots at many local pharmacies and supermarkets, as well as public health centers in Tarrant County.

Everyone six months of age and older should receive a shot. It’s especially important for people at risk of severe influenza, including children under the age of 2, people more than 65 years, pregnant women and people with chronic conditions.

Here’s what you should know for the 2017-2018 influenza season.

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There’s still time to weigh-in on historic preservation ordinance

The city’s Planning & Development Department will meet with residents at a second public meeting scheduled for 6 p.m. Oct. 25, at Thistle Hill, 1509 Pennsylvania Ave., to further discuss public comments and receive more input.

The city is updating the Historic Preservation Ordinance in an effort to streamline the approval process.

Work on ordinance revisions began in 2016. Updates for consideration include:

  • Eliminating redundant text.
  • Clarifying text that is confusing.
  • Streamlining the project review process.

Make plans to attend the meeting to hear all the updates and give feedback.

Learn more about historic preservation in Fort Worth.

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Fort Worth wins 2017 WaterSense Excellence Award

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recognized the City of Fort Worth with a 2017 WaterSense Excellence Award as a leader in water conservation efforts. Fort Worth was honored at the WaterSmart Innovations Conference last week. It was one of six cities nationwide to receive an Excellence Award in promoting the WaterSense Program, which helps residents use water more efficiently.

More than 1,700 utilities, manufacturers, retailers, builders and organizations partner with WaterSense. Only a select few, however, are recognized each year for their significant program contributions. This is the second Excellence Award received by the Fort Worth Water Department.

Fort Worth has engaged residents in a variety of programs to save water, such as the SmartFlush toilet program, which distributed more than 2,400 high-efficiency toilets in 2016, saving more than 15,241,708 gallons. In addition, Fort Worth offered more than 233 WaterSense-labeled showerheads at community events free to residents.

Since 2006, Fort Worth and other WaterSense partners have helped consumers save 1.5 trillion gallons of water, more than the amount of water used by all households in California for a year. In addition to water savings, WaterSense-labeled products and homes have helped reduce the amount of energy needed to heat, pump and treat water by 212 billion kilowatt hours since the program began in 2006 — enough energy to supply a year’s worth of power to more than 19.4 million homes.

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