Friday, November 1, 2013

Good News: City to Seek Funding for Light to Union St RR Bridge at Commercial

It's hard to know what all is envisioned in the actual scope of the project, but on Council agenda - actually the Urban Renewal Agency - for Monday is a note about applying for funding in the 2015-2020 cycle of Federal Funds for a light at the difficult and dangerous intersection of Union and Commercial.

Light at Commercial and Union
Detail from June 12th posters; comments added
This east-west crossing is the most tricky and even treacherous gap in the approach the Union Street Railroad Bridge, so solving it will create the central link in the bikeway! (And of course it helps people on foot, too.)  It was also a high priority project in the Downtown Mobility Study.

The proposal reads:
Shall the [Urban Renewal] Agency Board authorize the Executive Director to apply for and, if successful, accept federal funds from the Fiscal Year 2015-2020 Salem-Keizer Area Transportation Study Surface Transportation Program and Transportation Alternatives Program, for the construction of the Union Street NE/Commercial Street NE intersection improvement project, and if awarded authorize the use of up to $200,000 in matching funds from the Riverfront Downtown Urban Renewal Area?
There remain significant questions about how the intersection improvement project would work for people on bike south-bound on Commercial. The concept drawing was murky on this (see notes on diagram), and isn't of course the final design. The City will need to clarify this part. But since that's probably just paint and programming, those are details and not the nub.

The light itself is the nub, and it looks like the City is going to get serious about it!

There are four more projects that don't involve the Urban Renewal Agency in the total package, and there will be more to say on the whole over the weekend in the Council preview.

But for the moment, this is substantial good news from the City!


Curt said...

Another example that the city does listen. Imagine how much progress we could make if there were more people raising these issues. There are people in Salem government that know we need to do better. If people put more effort into supporting positive things and not just saying "No" all the time, things would happen a lot faster.

Salem Breakfast on Bikes said...

Yes, indeed.

Curt said...

I noticed on the N3B FB page that they are entertaining the theory that the city is manipulating the traffic signals in order create congestion on SB Commercial to generate support for the 3rd bridge. Adding another light on Commercial would fit that conspiracy all too well!