So this will meander more than a little.
One of those matters is the first reading of the ordinance to vacate remnant alleys and streets at the Blind School. So let's talk about that in an indirect way.
But the Hospital was conspicuously absent in press or public conversation about James Sallis' talk, "Rx for Better Health."
|(click to enlarge)|
|A huge proportion of the hospital campus is devoted to parking|
As long as you have ill people, we have services to sell!
Healthcare funding and delivery is a far bigger topic than we can take on here, so enough on that.
But it is interesting that OHSU, with whom Salem Health has been taking about a merger or acquisition or something, manages to have a much stronger transportation options program.
|Biking at OHSU|
Unfortunately the main reason is maybe not so altruistic:
Traffic and parking is limited by the topography of our hill and river campuses. To ensure patients can access OHSU by all means, our employees and students have gone above and beyond in diversifying their means of travel to OHSU. Diverse modes of travel serves OHSU’s frontline mission to offer the best possible patient experience and OHSU’s wider mission of community health.The Blind School parcel was, likely, too cheap. So there's no financial incentive for the Hospital to think about something other than vast lots of free parking.
This is an important reason why the regulatory checks offered by City parking maxima are important. In no small part because of free parking, we have a market failure, and a regulatory agency must step in.
The EOA-HNA has been talking some about infill, and one of the stray topics has been ways to make it easier to put duplexes and triplexes on existing land zoned for single-family residences. (Zoning really makes my eyes glaze over, so if you want to expand on this, correct, or clarify in the comments, please do so! I will amend any text as necessary.)
There's a slightly interesting Planning Administrator decision on a partition of some "land that time forgot," a rural, orchard remnant in a neighborhood that has been developed for around a half-century.
|The intersection of Pheasant and Ratcliff Drive SE|
This parcel is in that land, and as you can see from the pictures, it lacks sidewalks. One of the roads has minimal shoulders, but not sidewalks, and the other road is a narrow, barely-paved country lane.
So in order to develop the land, the half-street section of Ratcliff fronting the property will need to be improved to "local street standards" with a 30-foot cross-section.
|A typical Local Street Section|
|Sidewalk ends on Lone Oak|
The downside is that if a sidewalk is built, it will terminate abruptly, just like this one on Lone Oak.
Pheasant calls for a 30-foot improvement as well, but it's a super-low-traffic lane, and City Engineering makes a defensible judgement that a minimal 22-foot improvement is sufficient. But a sidewalk may not be in this, alas. And even 22-feet seems like it might be bigger than necessary given the hill and concomitant slow speeds. More sidewalk, less auto travel lane!
Apparently there's a full 60-feet of ROW already dedicated, so the "yard" here encroaches quite a ways into public land. I don't know that this matters, but it is interesting.
Edgewater District Notice
Not on Council agenda, but also an interesting corner lot, is a hearing notice for three lots on the corner of Kingwood and Second Street in West Salem.
|Three lots proposed to be rezoned to commercial|
Don't have a strong opinion here yet, but if the City hopes to redevelop the area as a walkable commercial district, this could have implications. It'll be interesting to watch.