BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS'
February 21, 2001
Commissioners' Conference Room
APPROVED JUNE 27, 2001
Commissioner Anna Morrison presided with Commissioners Bill Dwyer, Bobby Green, Sr., Peter Sorenson and Cindy Weeldreyer present. County Administrator Bill Van Vactor, Assistant County Counsel Stephen Vorhes and Recording Secretary Melissa Zimmer were also present.
14. PUBLIC HEARINGS
a. PUBLIC HEARING AND ORDER 01-2-21-11/In the Matter of Approving the Preliminary Alignment and Right-of-Way Widths for the Pioneer Parkway Extension as Adopted by the City of Springfield.
Commissioner Morrison opened up the Public Hearing.
Morrison asked the Board if they had any conflicts or ex-parte contacts.
Dwyer noted that, other than speaking with the neighborhood association, he had none.
There were no conflicts from the other commissioners.
Tom Stinchfield, Public Works, reported they were seeking approval of the preliminary alignment and a right-of-way plan for the Pioneer Parkway Extension Project. He said the project was added to the Gateway Refinement Plan in 1992 and there were changes to reduce the Game Farm Road project at that time. He noted the two policies in the plan that the city and County agreed to for this roadway in the existing residential area to the south and in the undeveloped area to the north. He noted there is an order that would approve the alignment shown as Exhibit A. (Copy in file). He explained the City of Springfield adopted a resolution in 1998, (Resolution 98-35) that approved this alignment.
Dwyer wanted a solution that would work. His vision was to return Game Farm Road to a neighborhood street, with Pioneer Parkway traversing International Way. He wanted connectivity, impacting the least amount of people as possible. He suggested accepting most of the alignment (and sending the continuation of the roadway to International Way) back to the City of Springfield for their consideration.
Al Peroutka, City Engineer, City of Springfield, reported they worked on a refinement plan adopted in 1992 that called for a north/south arterial roadway in the general vicinity. He noted the idea was to take care of the increased traffic volume and minimizing the impact on the existing residences in the area by providing an alternate route. He added the 10,000 cars-per-day triggered a refinement and they are looking for funding. He said they had consultants develop the alignment. He explained it would be a four lane arterial roadway designated at 40 mile per hour. He noted they eliminated one of the streets that tied Pioneer Parkway to Game Farm Road in response to the comments by the Game Farm neighbors to discourage use of the road. He added they are trying to minimize right of way in the southern portion and the Springfield City Council is proposing no sidewalks and bike lanes in that section, minimizing the impact to the residents on that portion of the route. He noted this not only impacts Game Farm Road, but the whole system in the area.
Nick Arnis, City of Springfield, reported he met with Dwyer and they agreed there needed to be a link to International Way. He noted they had not met with the property owners and had not gone back to the Springfield City Council.
Stinchfield explained the primary reason the County was involved (per the refinement plan) was that part of the neighborhood was still unincorporated. He noted the project was listed in the revised TransPlan as a City of Springfield project.
Bonnie Ulman, President, Game Farm Neighbors, 3350 Oriole Street, Springfield, said that Game Farm Road had taken the brunt of increased traffic. She noted there were 67 driveways and eight intersections onto Game Farm and it is almost impossible for residents to use get out. She requested to see how the extension would work with International Way, impacting the least amount of people. She asked for a delay on Game Farm Road until they determine how Pioneer Parkway works. She was against going forward with Game Farm Road.
Vorhes noted the proposed alignment as approved by the City of Springfield was in the packet. He added if there were any changes, his recommendation was to wait until the City of Springfield develops its changes, and comes back to the Board when they are comfortable with the whole package of alignment, then have a hearing before final action.
Sue Klein, Manager of Patrician Mobile Home Park, agreed with Dwyer’s proposal. She said closing their entrance off Beltline would be good. She agreed that Beltline should continue to International Way.
Mike Gillette, 3550 Gateway St., Springfield, stated his family had owned the Pacific Nine Motor Inn in Springfield for 22 years. He said the extension of Pioneer Parkway and Beltline affects his business. He supported Dwyer’s proposed alignment of Pioneer Parkway to better serve Sony and Symantec as part of the solution.
Dave Stylick, 1075 International Way, concurred with Dwyer on having the Pioneer Parkway Extension merge farther north
Alice Verret, 3195 Wayside Loop, said that Dwyer’s idea had merit.
Stinchfield said they received three letters: Richard Boyles (February 13) in support; Wallace West and Janet Chapel (February 18), who own property near the Game Farm Beltline intersection, expressing concerns about the impact; and Jay and Kathleen Surgeon (January 20) in support of the Pioneer Parkway project and stating that Game Farm Road should be left alone.
Arnis said that they would take this to the Springfield City Council and refine the plan with the neighborhood group.
Stinchfield noted there would be a public hearing on the capital improvement program with the Roads Advisory Committee on February 28 and the Game Farm Road project is still in the County CIP.
Dwyer requested the $1.9 million for Game Farm Road be moved to Pioneer Parkway. He wanted this to happen within the next five years.
There being no one else signed up to speak, Commissioner Morrison closed the Public Hearing.
MOTION: to defer action.
Dwyer MOVED, Sorenson SECONDED.
15. COMMISSIONERS' ANNOUNCEMENTS
16. OTHER BUSINESS
a. DISCUSSION/Off Road Vehicle Use.
Weeldreyer noted that last year the Board dealt with noise ordinance violations in the Mohawk Valley. At that time, the Board crafted a solution to enforce the noise ordinance on Eric Rogers’ property. Morrison said the second step was to look at the update of the rural comprehensive plan and develop ways to be more deliberate about allowing permitted uses for off highway vehicles.
Rob Amamota, Deputy Forest Supervisor, Willamette National Forest, stated their regulations are based on the Code of Federal Regulations. He said the Forest Plan Standard and Guidelines allocate lands to categories. He noted some of the issues are conflicts among users and using trails not designed for off road vehicles. He added they deal with speeding, noise, trespass and the impact on water and vegetation. He said these arise from a minor segment of the user population. He noted that Huckleberry Flats near Oakridge and an area around the Hoodoo Ski area are primitive roads that were never intended to become off road vehicle areas.
Joe Williams, Recreation Manager, BLM, stated that regulations governing the Willamette National Forest also applied to BLM lands because they have some of the same authorities. He reported the Eugene District BLM manages 321,000 acres. He said there were hundreds of roads, some with gates. He said in the 1995 Eugene District Resource Management Plan, the BLM prescribed how off road use would be managed for public land in the district. He said lands are closed, have limitations, or are open to off road vehicle for use with existing roads and trails. He said they work with off road vehicle management in the Marcola Valley. He noted a process was underway for designating roads and trails for off road vehicle use. He explained the BLM did not create off road vehicle trails, they were looking at a series of trails and attempting to inventory the trail system. He said their goal in the Mohawk area was to develop public land stewardship. He noted they issue permits for competitive events.
Dave Brawley, Assistant to the District Ranger, Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area. He stated the ODNRA was created by Congress in 1972, incorporating 31,000 acres from Florence to Coos Bay. He said they were established for the use and enjoyment of the resources and conservation of resources. He reported about a million people per year visit the area. He said the area for off highway vehicle riding constitutes about 40% in the new plan. He added off highway vehicle use is an important economic factor for the coast. He noted that noise had become a problem. He said there had been zoning changes and in the Florence area and near Coos Bay, the public thought a curfew would be appropriate. He said they instituted a curfew that stopped riding at 10:00 p.m. He noted another suggestion was for a sound bar. He said they worked with community groups to establish a boundary that worked.
Terry Eckles, State of Oregon, stated he is the ATV coordinator. He reported there had been a growth in the ATV program from 10% to 25% annually for hunting and recreation. He noted the State (through state parks) receives about $3.8 million per biennium from ATV license fees. He explained they fund operation and maintenance, safety programs, development of riding areas, law enforcement and acquisition. He said they could manage the program and reduce the sound. He said they are considering private opportunities.
Jake Risely, Parks Department, reported there are 54 parks in Lane County, covering 4,000 acres. He said Parks does not provide any off road vehicle access at the park sites. He reported that in 1968 Willamette Industries gave 5.7 acres in Marcola to the Parks Department to be used for picnicking and the County would develop and maintain it for recreation. He said in 1995 the commissioners decided to return the property to Willamette Industries. He added that Parks has identified Blue Mountain Park, Vaughn Park (leased through the Corps of Engineers), Siuslaw Falls, and South Beach near Florence as potential sites. He added Bohemian Saddles might also be available.
Risely reported they surveyed 36 counties in the state to determine what ORV programs were in their park system. He said 22 had some form of ORV activity, but 14 counties did not respond. He said Jackson, Josephine, Lake and Morrow Counties had designated ORV areas, with Jackson County having the most.
Steve Peterson, Emerald Trail Riders, said he is not a member of the club, but had been working with the BLM. He said that Congress required that federally managed lands be designated as open, limited, or closed to ORV use. He said that designation limited ORVs to roads or paved roads or existing trails, which scaled down availability. He said there used to be a large area around Lorane, but there are just a few trail segments now. Regarding the coast range, he said there was an extensive trail of networks which were 80% private property. He noted of the three resource areas, most ORV usage is in the McKenzie resource area in the Coburg Hills.
Weeldreyer wanted to come back to the Board in three months with recommendations for a long-term approach to managing ORV use in Lane County.
MOTION: to move that the Board create an off road vehicle work group that would report back to the Board in three months with recommendations to be considered.
Dwyer stated he wanted to serve on this work group as part of the Parks Advisory Committee
Weeldreyer MOVED, Dwyer SECONDED.
Sorenson was more comfortable with Parks coming back with a recommendation.
Weeldreyer stated it was not her intent to undermine the Parks Advisory Committee. She said this would be an ad hoc group which was broader than the Parks Advisory Committee.
Green was not opposed to Weeldreyer forming a work group. He did not want any budgetary impact.
Dwyer thought it was appropriate for the state to also take the lead.
Weeldreyer noted that a year ago she made a promise in Marcola that the Board would explore long-term solutions to avoid this kind of conflict.
There being no further business, Commissioner Morrison adjourned the meeting at 4:00 p.m.