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Approved 6/28/00

March 29, 2000
REGULAR MEETING - LANE COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS'
Harris Hall Main Floor -- 1:30 p.m.

Commissioner Peter Sorenson presided with Commissioners Bill Dwyer, Bobby Green, Sr., Anna Morrison and Cindy Weeldreyer present. Dave Garnick, Acting County Administrator, Assistant County Counsel Stephen Vorhes and Recording Secretary Melissa Zimmer were also present.

12. PUBLIC HEARINGS

a. PUBLIC HEARING, RESOLUTION AND ORDER 00-3-29-9 Approving a Project Design Concept and Acquiring Fee or Other Interests in Portions of Certain Real Properties for Improvement of Pearl Street, MP 0.25 to MP 0.49, Based on the Findings in Attachment A; and Authorizing Staff to Prepare a Right-of-Way Plan Necessary to Construct the Road, Pursue all Necessary Planning Actions, Acquire Right-of-Way and Prepare Plans and Specifications for Improvement of Said Road.

Ollie Snowden, Public Works, reported that in the early 1990's the City Council from Coburg came to the Board of Commissioners asking to add the commercial section of Pearl Street to the capital improvement program. He noted the Board did that and in 1994 there was a public meeting in Coburg where public comment was taken on design alternatives for this section of the road. He said they found the local street connections and configurations to Pearl Street so contentious that Lane County put the project on hold until the Coburg City Council had a chance to develop a transportation system plan that would better define the connecting roads. He said the City did that and the Board adopted the TSP. He noted they have moved the project forward and it is scheduled for construction in the Summer 2001.

Snowden said there was a meeting with the Roads Advisory Committee in December in Coburg where they presented a design alternative. He said between that time and when the Road’s committee saw this in January, Lane County was approached by Truck and Travel [a local business] with suggestions to improve access.

Snowden reported that Green was successful in getting the whole interchange configuration included in the bond projects for Region 2 of $10.8 million that would take care of the interchange. He added it would also take care of the Roberts realignment. He said if Measure 82 passes in May, then the project would be delivered in six years. He added if Measure 82 doesn’t pass, there is no money available to do this project. He said what ODOT is planning is going with an immediate opportunity fund application to work on the northbound offramp and a signal at the offramp terminal. He added as a match, ODOT would use the County’s expenditure on Pearl Street to provide the 50% match for that grant.

Snowden reiterated that what they had proposed in December was the section between Coburg Industrial Way and Stewart would have a signal. He noted that it was this portion Truck and Travel was objecting to in January and they presented two alternative designs they thought were superior. He said the preferred alternative was rather than leaving Stewart Way where it is, to relocate Roberts Road as a portion of the County project. He added the second alternative was to relocate Stewart Way to the west boundary of Truck and Travel.

He said as they interpreted the TSP, the alignment of Stewart was more consistent with the alignment that was being proposed by Truck and Travel. He recommended to the Roads Committee that Stewart Way get realigned for longer storage in the turn lane.

Snowden said because Pearl Street is inside the city limits, they need authorization from Coburg to assess curb, gutter and sidewalks and authorization to do the project in the city. He added a letter was sent to the City Council asking that the Board have an opportunity to meet, and there was a meeting on March 21. He noted at the meeting the Council made it clear that they did not support realignment of Stewart Way. He said his response to the Council was if they were not in favor of the relocation, they could go back to the original proposal. He recommended leaving Stewart Way where it is, but Truck and Travel would have some expense. He added that the Coburg City Council needed more time to think about this. He said his recommendation is to extend the comment period until April 26, 2000 for discussion by the Coburg City Council.

Weeldreyer stated she met twice with Coburg City Council. She reported they were not happy moving Stewart Way closer to the residential area. She noted they met a week ago Tuesday with County staff and the council. She reiterated that the council is not supportive, nor are the businesses, about moving Stewart Way. She noted that for Truck and Travel, the back tires of the trucks are pivoting because it is too tight a turn. She said Lane County made a commitment to the Coburg City Council that the Board wouldn’t take action on this today, and would wait until the Coburg City Council comes back with a recommendation on the Pearl Street project. She said the best solution is to move Roberts Road west, realign it with Coburg Industrial Way and put in a signal intersection. She noted the turning lanes would impact a Shell Station that had just upgraded.

Georgene Koehler, Coburg City Council, passed out information on the transportation system planning final draft. (Copy in file.) She noted they were surprised at the realignment of Stewart because the Council had stated they would like it to be in the final phases when ODOT had done its study to see how it would affect traffic flow. She added the big issue of moving Stewart closer to Coburg is air and noise pollution from trucks. She asked that a noise and air analysis be performed before Stewart is moved.

Green asked if the Coburg City Council didn’t favor moving Stewart Way, would the City pay for the configuration they wanted. He asked if the Coburg City Council was considering that.

Koehler responded they approved the movement of Stewart Way, once the air and noise studies had been conducted. She said they may just vacate it.

Snowden explained that Lane County has to get authorization from the City to rebuild a County road inside a city. He said that the City of Coburg needs to return with comments.

Sorenson asked Nick Arniss, ODOT, where this project is going and the state’s role.

Arniss responded they spent two to three years going through facilitation to the plan that will be adopted. He noted there are safety and operation problems. He added it is an unsafe situation and they are trying to improve it. He said they put up a temporary four-way stop. He noted they will be applying for immediate opportunity funds to improve the ramp for storage capacity. He said modeling and projections show they couldn’t keep Stewart in the same place because of cars backing up.

Morrison asked who would pay for the County modified plan and the preferred plan.

Snowden responded the agency that would relocate Roberts Road would have to acquire the right-of-way and pay whatever damages occurred to the gas station. He didn’t see Lane County paying for the improvements.

Dwyer asked if there were staggered shift arrangements to mitigate the traffic problem at Country Coach.

Arniss stated they would like to work with the City of Coburg, ODOT and DLCD to come up with a Transportation Demand Management Strategy for the City of Coburg.

Commissioner Sorenson opened the Public Hearing.

Georgean Koehler, stated there has been work on the intersection and eventually there will be a traffic light. She said she asked the County if they could get a traffic light early and was told it was too expensive to redo it when the road is put in. She added that Marathon is paying for a police officer to direct traffic at peak times. She noted that it has helped but it is not a perfect answer.

Jim Anderson, 32910 E. Pearl Street, stated he is with Track and Travel. He stated they have been in Coburg for 25 years and have been a good neighbor to the community. He said they have been working on this project with the County and City for the past five years. He said they will be impacted the most by any project. He stated that the City of Coburg does not want them moving farther west.

Lester Nixon, 90932 S. Stewart Way, stated he is from Eugene Camping World RV Park. He was concerned about Stewart Way and how far west it would be moved. He noted moving it to the west is an advantage for his motor homes and trailers.

Jim Lockhart, 32811 E. Maple, Coburg, stated he represents the affected residents. He noted that any movement of the trucks into the city limits will affect the neighborhood with noise and diesel fumes and that is what they are fighting about. He said to keep Stewart Road the way it is, is not bad. He noted a problem that will arise will be the ramp that will be built that will block Roberts Road completely. He said something needs to be done about the traffic that is backed up to the freeway. He said if Stewart Way is put in first, they will be in bad shape because all of the traffic will be going into their neighborhoods. He asked to be given a safe place to live.

Mike Warner, Director of Human Resources, Marathon, 91333 Coburg Industrial Way, stated the traffic is getting worse and they are hearing from their employees about the traffic problem. He said they requested that traffic signs be posted on I-5 warning the stopping traffic, but they were denied. He said the stop sign at the exit has helped. He reported they are staggering shifts. He said they are taking control over what they can. He noted the company now has 300 employees and will be adding 100 within the next 12 months. He said there are significant traffic safety issues that take place every day.

Sorenson asked Warner what would be helpful for signage to warn people about the congestion.

Warner suggested placing near Egge Road, a yellow traffic sign that says "Congested Traffic in the Morning." He added it is worse in winter because of fog.

Arniss suggested speaking with the District Manager at ODOT about temporary signage.

Sorenson suggested putting it on the Future Agenda and bringing in the District 5 manager for a partnership discussion.

There being no one else signed up to speak, Commissioner Sorenson closed the Public Hearing.

Sorenson announced that discussion will be continued on this topic.

Weeldreyer stated that she would like to have Truck and Travel and other businesses and residents comment before final action.

Dwyer stated it was appropriate to have another public hearing.

Weeldreyer suggested a meeting with the Coburg City Council to discuss issues. She noted it is a huge issue for Coburg and warrants that kind of treatment.

Sorenson said the Board will await guidance from Snowden, Public Works, Weeldreyer, and the Coburg City Council on getting together.

Sorenson announced that the record will be kept open.

Green wanted a commitment by the City of Coburg on this project. He asked about the financial commitment Coburg would be willing to make.

Sorenson asked Snowden to bring someone in from ODOT to see if signage could be put out.

13. COMMISSIONERS' ANNOUNCEMENTS

None.

14. OTHER BUSINESS

None.

There being no further business, Commissioner Sorenson recessed the meeting into the Executive Session at 3:15 p.m. 

Melissa Zimmer
Recording Secretary

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