Unconstrained Modeling and Planning
The two matters of the Third Bridge and the Police Station appear to show a pattern: Modeling that is unconstrained by empirical data.
Interestingly, the draft amendments to the Transportation System Plan have been edited since they first came before the Planning Commission.
N3B pointed out that the Plan was being untethered from "anticipated revenue sources" and that the most likely reason for this was in order to smuggle into it the giant budget for the proposed Third Bridge and ancillary projects, which at present has no viable funding plan and does not constitute something with a reasonably anticipated revenue source or sources. It is unconstrained by reasonable expectations and empirical data.
|December 2015 draft|
|January 2016 draft|
Otherwise I don't think there's a whole more to add on the substance of the amendments than what was said when it came to the Planning Commission.
|Not sure the interior shows this same modal balance!|
|Report on crashes: Crosslands at #2|
The total square footage need for the new Police facility assumes a modest growth profile for the next 30 years of an average of 2.4 officers per year. The new facility is consistent with those recently constructed in the northwest but below staffing per 1,000 resident ratios of comparably sized communities....But apparently Salem's force hasn't been growing by 2.4 officers per year for quite some time, and there is little reason to suppose that Salem will suddenly conform to this model. According to the report, in 1972 there were 108 sworn officers and in 2015 there were 187. That's a linear growth rate of 1.8 officers per year, not 2.4.
...divisions within a police department will grow at different rates. This [2.4/year] is an average rate of growth for a 30 year planning horizon. To illustrate that police do not grow in symmetrical fashion, he pointed to annexation, which may require growth in patrol positions to provide the same level of service...
(And of course there could be reasons to think that linear growth itself isn't a "best fit" either, just as we have seen driving plateau around 2005. Old 20th century assumptions may no longer be valid, reasonable, or "best available." The assumptions in modeling deserve more discussion.)
It would be interesting to see if sudden annexation of all the unincorporated county land between Lancaster and Cordon road, the whole Urban Growth Boundary even, would yield anything close to the larger growth rate.
So this looks like it could be an example of a model that doesn't correspond to any Salem reality, and maybe it would be more reasonable to model the needs for a growth rate of 1.8 officers per year and use that as the baseline in debate.
Indeed, on the surface this looks like over-aggressive modeling just like we see in our road planning, especially in the fictions wrought for the Third Bridge.
There's a report on a "stream mitigation banking program" that looks like it creates a market for stream restoration. As it develops, credits could be sold to other private or public entities. Without thinking at all deeply on it, this sounds a little like a "cap and trade" concept," pricing something and doing with a market what burdensome regulations had been trying to accomplish.
Hopefully watershed folks will have more commentary, as this looks like it could be very interesting!
And Council will hear the appeal on the Pembrook apartments at the old Stayton Cannery site. This looks like a pretty straightforward case to reverse the Hearings Officer's decision, which seemed odd, and quite possibly based on an error or a misreading. (Previous notes here and here.)