In discussion of "opportunity sites," there's a note that the City might want to use urban renewal funds for purchasing a Police Station site.
SCV has already commented on this (p.16 on their new position paper), and they are right: Using tax increment financing for a Police Station is a bad idea. At best it would be a terrifically inefficient way to generate new tax revenues and leveraging other redevelopment. But the more likely outcome is that it would fail to generate these. More importantly, there are other places for targeting urban renewal funds that will do much more for raising the property tax base of the district than a publicly owned police station. No one ever says, "Oh, I want to go visit the police station district!" But using urban renewal to assist a reuse/redevelopment of the Belluschi Bank or Marion Car Park sites could very well yield a project that elicits "Let's go to so-and-so!" Using urban renewal to improve streetscape for people on foot and on bike will also do more to generate people traffic and commerce. Using urban renewal for a Police Station is inefficient in the same way that using urban renewal for the Pringle Creek district failed to generate any surplus value that outpaced mere inflation and cost-of-living increases.
|An early concept for Union and Commercial from 2014|
The Mobility Study project was reviewed. This project is funded with federal transportation funds and URA funds . It will include bulbouts, a median on Union St, sharrows, and a separate bicycle signal. All improvements will be in right-of-way. A consultant was chosen last fall, will bid this fall, and construction will start next spring.I don't like this language of "[parking] where...the bike lane is competing."
The DAB asked for clarification on the traffic pattern going east on Union, and the parking on Union Street where it appears the bike lane is competing.
|Marion Parkade at PEAK = 40% full|
There is no scarcity involved with parking spots here. There is great scarcity involved in safe and comfortable facilities downtown for people on bike. To say bike lanes and parking are "competing" is a kind of non sequitur, it's nonsense.
The more interesting question may be why aren't we talking about a harder buffer than mere striping?
The current proposal shows a painted left-hand buffer with right-hand curbside parallel parking. (Update - The City should not be showing this image, as this part is not yet funded and is some ways out in a future phase.)
|Current concept east of Commercial shows a left-side buffer|
and right-side parallel parking.
(Update - this is actually far off in the future.)
|Protected bike lane with driveways|
FHWA Separated Bike Lane Planning Guide
|Whom does our Bronze rating actually serve?|
(via MassDOT Separated Bike Lane Planning Guide)
|Schematic for Protected Intersection|
Alta, December 2015
|Phase 2 on the south side, looking northwest|
Phase II of Southblock just went vertical. Should be complete end of year. 100% occupancy for Phase I with a waiting list100% full! MOAR DOWNTOWN HOUSING! As other developers see the success, hopefully they will want to invest also. The single most important thing for downtown vitality is not "moar parking" or "wider-faster-streets," instead it's more people living, walking, eating, and shopping downtown.
Not in the minutes, but exciting also is the progress on the alley between Liberty and Commercial.
Vagabond's project looks close to opening.
Like Santiam did when they had the pop-up tasting room called "The Bureau," the Vagabonds also look like they're doing an homage to Salem's beer history.
The Victory Club seems to be the name of their new bar and taproom on the alley behind the Reed Opera House. It's also the name of a beer brewed by the Salem Brewing Assocation about 1938.
Sick's purchased the Salem Brewing Assocation a few years later, but Victory Club would have been brewed at the facility on Commercial and Trade, right where the Sculpture Garden is today.
|The brewery at the Conference Center Sculpture Garden site|
(Sick's Brewery via Salem Library Historic Photo)
A certain kind of rough paneling, in fact, is a thing now it seems. The New School just did a post about purveyors of cider, and several of them have the paneling.
Speaking of cider, 1859 Cider, the cidery one block north, is coming along also, but it's still in the roughing-in phase, so there's not much yet to see. But between the alley entries for Amadeus, the Victory Club, 1859 Cider, and Urban Alley - there's a pop of energy here, and that's also very exciting.
The Board meets Thursday the 11th, from 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm in the Urban Development Conference Room, 350 Commercial St NE, underneath the Chemeketa Parkade.