Multiple items were discussed by the Arkadelphia City Board of Directors during their Saturday retreat.

Multiple items were discussed by the Arkadelphia City Board of Directors during their Saturday retreat.
According to Arkadelphia City Manager Gary Brinkley, he and Derek Phillips, community events director with the City of Arkadelphia, have worked together to develop a plan to help make the city look better.
“We’ve talked to OBU and HSU to work with them on their serve days this fall,” said Phillips.
Phillips, who moved back to Arkadelphia several years ago, noted he has often bragged on the appearance of Arkadelphia.
After talking to Brinkley and driving around the city to look at fire hydrants and street signs, Phillips began to notice that some of the signs are leaning over and that some of the fire hydrants have faded.
“A lot of these poles that these signs are on are totally rusted out. We have a lot of silver ones and greens ones and they a mixed all over town. It would look better if they were all pretty and were one color,” said Phillips.
By partnering with Henderson and Ouachita on the university’s respective serve days, Phillips said the city could replace the signs that are faded and the poles that are rusted out.
“We’re going to get some of the kids to clean up the signs,” Phillips said.
In addition, the plan is to repaint the faded fire hydrants.
“We’ve met with both of these universities and they are really excited about helping us with this,” said Phillips.
Based on the research, Phillips said the fire hydrants can be painted different colors.
“We’re going to have OBU paint the hydrants on their campus and in their perimeter, their school colors. Henderson, their school colors. They are going to take care of the paint and the painting of those hydrants. They will look fresh and new and really good,” said Phillips.
According to Phillips, fire hydrants in the perimeter of campuses in the Arkadelphia Public School District will be painted blue, while hydrants in the general Arkadelphia community will be painted red.
“It may look a little funny, but they won’t have vines, mud, rust, and paint chipping off,” Phillips said.
Phillips noted there are up to 500 fire hydrants in the city. Once the fire hydrants have been painted, the city will take on the responsibility of maintaining the appearance of the hydrants.
According to Brinkley, the City of Arkadelphia can and needs to use zoning as a means to improve the city.
“Some of it needs to be a little more restrictive and some of it needs to be less restrictive,” Brinkley said.
Turning his attention to the city’s gateways, Brinkley noted the current Leadership Clark County class is in the process of finalizing the designs for a new sign introducing travelers to Arkadelphia and the downtown area. The sign is expected to be placed near the new Ouachita River Bridge on Highway 7/51.
“The drive in from Caddo Valley is so pretty. We need to make sure that our zoning allows for it to stay beautiful,” said Brinkley.
In addition, Brinkley said it is important for the city to develop more strategies and offer more attractions to draw motorists from Interstate 30 into Arkadelphia.
“You can’t let those cars go by and not realize there is potential there. When you are sitting there watching cars go down I-30 if we don’t have something they want, it just breaks my heart,” Brinkley said.

Brinkley said the the key to solving the city’s drainage issues would be the creation of a retention pond.
In addition, Brinkley said Scott Bennett of the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department will be in Arkadelphia soon to discuss the proposal for a bypass and other transportation issues in the city.