department that quietly maintains the city's infrastructure projects,
deals with traffic, controls water quality, and collects and disposes
of solid wastes and recyclables.
"We're the silent service that, if we're doing our job
successfully, the typical resident doesn't know we exist," said
Deputy City Manager Bruce Feng, who heads Public Works and the city's
Traffic and transportation, a hot item at the department, is
responsible for the design and construction of devices such as speed
humps, logistical plans and the operation of about 190 traffic
signals. Public Works is also contracted by Glendale to maintain that
city's 250 traffic lights.
In addition, the department plans next spring to set up the
Burbank Traffic Management Center, a control room that will monitor
city streets and alter signals to decrease congestion.
"Traffic is very important for the quality of life in Burbank,"
Feng said. "And since we can't build a bigger infrastructure, we've
got to make it smarter."
Public Works is unique in that it has its own landfill in the
Verdugo Mountains, west of De Bell Golf Course. In addition, the
department runs its own water reclamation plant, which only four
other cities in Los Angeles County have.
The plant, at 740 N. Lake St., treats 9 million gallons of sewage
per day, which is released into storm drains.
"It's compatible with our philosophy that we're a full-service
city," City Engineer Bonnie Teaford said. "It completes that whole
circle of what we provide for the city."
Public Works is home to 192 full-time employees and 101 contracted
employees, some of whom are available day or night to fix a water
main break or a traffic light malfunction.
The department also operates the Burbank Recycling Center at 500
S. Flower St., and the Public Works yard at 124 S. Lake St. In
addition, it runs the city's Graffiti Hotline, which encourages
people to call 238-3806 whenever they spot vandalism.