October 2015 minutes

SW Trails PDX
Monthly Meeting

October 22, 2015

The Watershed Building in Hillsdale
6388 SW Capitol Hwy
Portland OR 97239

Attendance: Don Baack, Lee Buhler, Patty Barker, Dave Manville, Chris Mays, Dianne Mays, Michael Kisor, Dale Sherbourne, Virginia Hendrickson, Glenn Bridger, Mark Lear, Courtney Duke, Dennis Frengle, Hans Steuch, Tracey Bryce, Wendy Christensen, Keturah Pennington, Barbara Stedman, Doug Rogers

The meeting was called to order at 7:00pm.

Courtney Duke from the Portland Department of Transportation talked about the Transportation Service Plan. The TSP is part of the Portland Comprehensive Plan. She went over the components of the plan. She said trails is a part of the plan but not necessary to meet the State goals. She said connectivity is important to all parts of towns but there are different means of achieving that in different parts of town. There are lots of hills in southwest and there are trees that are important in southeast. These all affect the cost of street construction.

Don asked about street vacations. Courtney said they have used several plans for approval of street vacations. They feel that using policy for street vacations is not the best way to go. They are proposing approval code in section 16 of City zoning code. Courtney said they would like feedback. They would like to preserve the right-of-way for the movement of people as much as possible. She said people should look at the trail maps. Don asked people to look at that section. Don said we should also add that there should be no street encroachments if people use the right-of-way for travel. Someone asked if the language in section 16 came from Don and Courtney said it came from staff.

For more information see: https://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/63710 Don said the SWNI office has printed copies.

Mark Lear from PBOT who manages the resource group talked about a segment of the Red Electric. They are going to apply for a couple of State grants for the segment. One is Connect Oregon and another with lottery funds. The projects cannot be projects that gas tax money could be used for. He passed out information on the segments. One segment runs from Shaddock to SW Fairvale Ct. The project will a be a 12′ path. It will cost around $900,000. Don asked about the next segment east. Doug said it is now private land. Glenn said that might make it more difficult but worth looking at with the grants. Doug said there was an agreement that the land would go back to the City if a subdivision was developed. Barbara Stedman said the property was for sale. Mark said it might not work if gas tax money could be used. Don suggested people look at the Red Electric video on the SW Trails website. Bryce asked if adjacent neighbors would have liability. Mark said these would be a regional trails presumably with the right of way purchased from the landowners and therefore maintained by the City. He would check on it. Mark clarified that this segment does not go through Alpenrose.

Doug made the following motion: SW trails supports the Connect Oregon grant proposal for the Red Electric trail segment from Shaddock to Fairway providing the City will maintain and assume liability of the segment. Dennis seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. (We have written a letter of support).

Doug asked about the SDC charges and how that money has been used. Mark said they will use the SDCs to come up with the match for the Connect Oregon grant.

Don said Liz Mahon, the PBOT project manager, is talking about a meeting in November for the Red Electric bridge advisory committee.

Mark talked about the Southwest in Motion project. He said there was a similar project in east Portland that worked well. He said it is a project to develop active transportation modes. He said the goal is to put together a list of projects with priorities to then develop a funding strategy to get as many walking, biking routes as possible. He said equity was an important part of the project.

Don suggested some of the Southwest in Motion projects could be citizen improved. He said getting a City Council approved list of projects would help speed things up by not having to go through all the approval process and busy work.

Dave said there are about 200 trails that need maintenance and asked Mark if that could be done. He asked if the trails could be included in the Southwest in Motion project. Mark said this would be a big part of what they are talking about but they feel they need to get the grants first. He encouraged SW Trails to write a letter about the trails. Glenn said it would be good to talk about all parts of transportation at a single meeting and Southwest in Motion would work well for that. Mark agreed and said it was important to prioritize funding. Hans said he found the summary for East Portland in Motion and most of it goes to bike, sidewalk and crosswalk improvements and it might not work as well in southwest. Mark said east Portland does not have the opportunities for trails that southwest does. He said the bike component was reduced as people were more interested in connectivity to mass transit.

Don said we are recognized as being ahead of the rest of the city in terms of trails.

Dave said we should work with PBOT on the Trails Policy as we work on the Southwest in Motion project. Hans said it was important to move ahead with the policy as it is. Patty said it is important to work with the City on maintenance for trails. Patty said we need to thank some people we have worked with at the City. She said Sarah may have misled Commissioner Saltzman in that permits are needed to do trail maintenance.

Glenn said there are different time-lines on things we can get involved in. He suggested a strategic plan on how we get involved in the projects. He volunteered to do a starter draft.

Don said we should talk to Metro about our involvement in Southwest in Motion.

Don talked about the council hearing. He said there were ten people in support of SW Trails. There were a few people in opposition. There were several amendments from SW Trails that were accepted. PBOT is still working on an amendment that would inform adjacent neighborhoods on the relief from liabilitity.

Patty said Commissioner Fritz added that the Commissioner of Transportation should have ultimate decision on a trail.

Patty said it would be helpful to add the word “advisory” in the policy. She said Sarah used that term many times in her testimony. Patty and Dave will work out the language.

Don said the Tryon Headwaters Street Plan will go to council November 4th. He said there is land owned by BES that there should be a walkway on.

Don said he is working on the five page request for trails in Albert Kelly.

Virginia said Hans will lead the November 14 hike. She said Dave did a great job on the October hike and arranged to finish minutes before the rain started.

Don said Parks finished the steps on Woods St.

The next meeting will be the third Thursday (19th) in November.

Dave said the next work party will be November 5th in Maricra Park.

The meeting was adjourned at 8:20pm

Respectfully submitted

Lee Buhler

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