A new program for Historic Neighborhoods and a proposed grant for crosswalk safety enforcement are among the topics.
|Grant Neighbhorhood in Transition:|
The lawn and fountain at Broadway Commons;
across the street on Broadway, a renovated four-square house
|Do you remember before Broadway Commons?|
One of the tools in balancing the old and the new has been historic districts. Lately, though, they have seemed less popular because in return for tax breaks, they do impose on home and building owners additional fees and regulatory burdens. Both the Fairmount and Grant neighborhoods have said "No" to their creation recently. On the other hand, the Court-Chemeketa Historic District has stopped deterioration in the neighborhood and in many ways the restoration of the Buchner House is the poster for its success.
At the same time, historic districts have been used as one of the chief tools in support of NIMBYism and in foiling redevelopment all in the name of protecting against "commercial encroachment." Behind historic districts have also often lurked faultlines on class, ethicity, and all that the word "gentrification" implies. (Here's a very nice piece on a debate in Brooklyn over a predominantly African-American neighborhood with gorgeous brownstones.)
the North Campus of the State Hospital, which has its own Historic District.
Somewhere there's a balance between the wanton destruction or "demolition by neglect" of old homes, houses, and buildings, and the creation of (and in many cases reversion to) more walkable forms of commercial development; a balance between desired redevelopment and enhanced property values, and pricing residents out of a neighborhood; a balance between retaining old beauty and creating new beauty. Even if one generation finds the right balance, changing conditions in a new generation may require new tools.
So the City of Salem is trying something new:
The Salem Neighborhood Heritage Program is proposed by the Historic Landmarks Commission (HLC) as part of their public outreach and education program. This program is intended to encourage Salem neighborhoods to celebrate their history and provide an opportunity for them to engage in a positive way with the City's Historic Preservation Program. The HLC will begin the program with a pilot project in the Grant neighborhood that will be funded with Certified Local Government (CLG) grant funds.At Council there's also an application for a pedestrian safety grant. It'll fund the overtime for police to conduct a safety education and enforcement action at intersections to be determined. You know the drill: The police announce an action and even specify the location, and they still ticket folks! (Pedestrian impedance all the way around.)
|Police conducting crosswalk safety enforcement at 17th and Nebraska|