Saturday, September 13, 2014

Bike Repair Station, On Your Feet Friday, Mission and Winter: Weekend Bits

Fresh concrete for bike repair station at Riverfront Park
You might recall a few scattered notes about the downtown neighborhood association, CAN-DO, and their application for a parks grant to install a bike repair stand and tire pump at Riverfront Park. The grant was approved late last spring, and installation is finally in progress! The station will be adjacent to the splash pad at the wye in the path system between Tom McCall and the dock.

On Your Feet Friday's Urban Gap

The 1889 Bush-Breyman Block, where Gallagher Fitness and Fox Blue is today, used to be more than twice as long.

Commercial Street, 1965
University of Oregon, Building Oregon Collection
On the north side of the central stair, marked by the little triangle, there used to be another set of nine windows.

Today, only the six on the south side remain.

Same view today, via the Google
Half the building's gone!
On Your Feet Friday was last night, and the staging area occupies a parking lot where the other half of the Bush-Breyman Block used to be.

On your Feet Friday, in the Parking Lot, from the alley
Just looking at the crowd some, I wondered how many of them were at Sunday Streets. It seemed like the two events drew a meaningfully different psychographic - with some overlap of course - and I wondered what it would take to interest this group in street closures or otherwise reclaiming some carspace.

Pioneer Trust owns the lot, as they do several of the adjoining buildings, and you just wonder for how much longer it will remain a gap in the urban fabric. How is it that our local incentives are aligned in such a way that for a half-century, it is more profitable to maintain a parking lot than to capture the economic value in a building's activity and leases? And what will it take to persuade some of these long-time Salem property owners (and there are several, many whose families accumulated the property two, three, even more, generations ago) to invest in "peripheral" activities that will actually drive up the value of these surface parking lots so that they can be redeveloped? (But that's another post...)

Sign of a Crash at Winter and Mission?

Concrete chunks displaced at Mission and Winter
Anyone know what happened here? The high curb/retaining wall on the south sidewalk on Mission Street at Winter Street looks like it sustained a mighty impact.

Cars get awfully zoomy on Mission Street, and this intersection needs improvements for people who walk and bike to the park, the hospital, and the university.

It is one of the matters involved in the contest right now between the neighborhood association on one side and the Hospital and the City on the other. It leads to the perennial question: Do we have to wait until someone is killed or maimed?


Curt said...

City hypocrisy on parking policy is evident in their respective actions on the hospital parking and downtown parking. According to a letter submitted by the hospital in the case file, the hospital alleges that their existing parking supply is inadequate resulting in employees parking in the spaces intended for patients. Sound familiar? This "problem" persists even after demolishing the Bush Elementary School and its public amenities in favor of an employee parking lot.

The city response to nearly identical issues downtown is to step up parking management tools like time limits and meters. The city response to the hospital is demolishing schools, playgrounds, cutting trees and demolishing historic buildings. All to protect their unique distinction as the only major employer in the Central Business District that charges nothing for parking.

The city proved our parking petitioners right about one thing--we cannot trust the city to manage parking.

Curt said...

Very strange crash site as well. In the bushes behind the wall there is a trail of concrete debris, a tire track, and the tree is also damaged. It looks like someone drove up over the wall and through the bushes and kept going through the parking lot.

When Public Works opposed intersection improvements here in conjunction with the hospital's development on the OSB property, they insisted that realignment of the route through Bush Park was necessary. There appears to be some demand for this new alignment.

Susann Kaltwasser said...

Yes, an accident with blood is needed for real change. i am not joking. It is part of the criteria. Ask the PW staff and they will tell you that number of accidents with injuries or death is required in many cases to affect a change in an intersection. On a major arterial it might take several to get something done.