1) Adopt Resolution No. 2017-18 calling for a measure election to be held on May 16, 2017, in the amount of $61.8 million, to finance the development of a new public safety facility
2) Adopt Resolution No. 2017-19 calling for a measure election to be held on November 7, 2017, in the amount of $15.3 million to finance seismic and building safety improvements to the Library
the Library is
an effective symbol
At least from here, the more likely reading is that peeling off the Library work greatly reduces its prospects, and allows the City to bump up the scope and cost of the Police Facility.
At the level of symbol, it is a "Know-Nothing" statement for more Law and Order at the expense of Knowledge. Like it or not, it says something about our priorities.
Bundling and mutually leveraging the needs seemed like the best chance for a right-sized Police Station and for desperately needed seismic work on the Library and City Hall. It also acknowledged trade-offs.
Now we'll likely see a "Yes, but" campaign like Cherriots faced in the fall of 2015: "Oh, we support the Library, but this is the wrong time/cost/tax..."
You might disagree, but it's hard to be hopeful about chances now on seismic work for City Hall and the Library. We will have funded and built years 20-40 of a future Police Station, which will be vacant for the first 20 years, at the expense of a seismic retrofit for the Library and City hall, useful right now. Building extra empty space for future growth to deny other urgent needs is utterly baffling. [Revised for clarity]
Past the Library and Police Station, there are several of smaller things of interest.
Delay at Boise
Several dates will be pushed out for a period of two years. From a revised Grant Agreement with the Urban Renewal Agency:
Developer agrees to use its commercially reasonable efforts to acquire the Land upon terms reasonably satisfactory to Developer, to obtain a commitment (the “Financing Commitment”) for financing of construction of the Project from a lender and upon term s reasonably satisfactory to Developer, and to begin construction of the Project, all on or beforeIt also appears to loosen the criteria for a formal declaration of "default."
March 1, 2016March 1, 2018 , and, subject to Unavoidable Delays, to substantially complete construction by March 30, 2017March 1, 2019. For the avoidance of doubt, Developer’s failure to complete construction by March 30, 2017March 1, 2019 due to Unavoidable Delays shall not be a default by Developer.
The Staff Report notes
The delay in project commencement was due to previously unknown site and soil conditions on the former Boise site, specifically unknown foundation and fill material that was recently discovered. Additionally, time was needed to address engineering concerns that were raised regarding the existing retaining wall along the south side of the site and its ability to withstand the load of the new construction.Two observations immediately jump out:
- Is anyone surprised? It has seemed always like there was a consistent pressure or tendency to underestimate the scope of contamination and other problematic site conditions at Boise.
- This may be evidence that the Urban Renewal Subsidies on the project have been necessary to make the project happen at all. (It really will not be possible to render a final judgement until after the project is done. It may be that the total subsidy is less generous than it has sometimes seemed. Perhaps Park Front will also encounter difficulties.)
Quarterly Economic Development Update
The "Quarterly update on economic development activities" is still super lame.
For example, about a useful new project of outreach to business, and expanding it from North Gateway to Fairview Industrial, it says:
In late 2016 information was mailed to 67 businesses in the Fairview URA, resulting in 36 direct contacts. More information can be found at http://www.cityofsalem.net/economicdevelopment.But at that "more information" url there is nothing about the 67 businesses/36 contacts! This outreach is a genuinely good new development by the City, and they hide a real discussion of it.
The report is just blather, a recitation of generalities and nothing very useful for actually assessing business development.
Big Project on Lancaster
There is an information report on a large development on Lancaster, tucked in between I-5 and Lancaster, south of Mission and Home Depot, for
a phased development consisting of (1) a 20,320 square foot warehouse, (2) a 12,000 square foot office, (3) a 24,000 square foot warehouse, and (4) a 12,000 square foot office...
|2685 Lancaster Dr SE is a quarry and pond!|
A Curious House and Lot on Eola
If you live in or often visit West Salem, you might recall this house on Eola Drive at the T-intersection with Kingwood Drive. As part of the road work on Eola, the City purchased it and demolished it.
|1890 Eola Drive - Gone!|
The City of Salem acquired the property located at 1890 Eola Drive NW...on May 16, 2012, for $255,006 as part of the Eola Drive Corridor Safety Improvement Project. At the time of acquisition, the Property contained a single family house. The house was incompatible with the improvements and was razed. Traffic signal infrastructure and a parking pad are currently located on the Property...So this lot doesn't have a driveway - and won't have a driveway. There's no on-street parking in front of it. But it's still zoned for single family residential. Is this an opportunity for car-free housing? Does it just get bolted on to someone's adjacent yard? $25,000 for a community garden is much too expensive! What do you do with it? It will be interesting to see.
Staff completed an in-house opinion of value and determined the unencumbered market value of the Property to be $45,600. As the Property will be encumbered by a permanent easement for the traffic signal infrastructure and deed restriction preventing automobile access to Eola Drive NW, staff has determined that market value of the Property as encumbered is $25,000.
Defederalizing the Union @ Commercial Project
It's hard to understand exactly what is going on here. Supposedly it's a swap of State funds for Federal funds as a way to reduce cost and red tape:
The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) has recently re-established the Locally Delivered State Funded Project Program that provides a fund exchange mechanism to “de-federalize” Federal-aid funded projects with construction budgets under $1 million....That sounds good, but it would be interesting to learn what exactly is being eliminated. It it a way to avoid "prevailing wages"? Are there environmental requirements that are being deleted? And what will now be funded with the portion of the Federal funds - what's the other side of the swap? The lack of detail is just a little fishy!
Staff has estimated that approximately $50,000 of total project cost will be saved on the project by eliminating the additional federal reporting and administrative requirements.
talk the funds might get allocated to highway work. It seems like they should instead be allocated to another multi-modal project that was not principally aimed at driving capacity.
- An Oregon Department of Transportation Speed Enforcement Overtime Grant for $4,500
- When Kuebler Road was constructed, they followed an old County Road, but deviated a little just south of Aumsville Highway. As part of the Mill Creek Corporate Center property it is no longer needed, and there's a petition to vacate the right-of-way.