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Agendas and Minutes

Transportation Commission (View All)

Transportation Commission Meeting

Agenda
Thursday, November 29, 2012

ASHLAND TRANSPORTATION COMMISISON
MINUTES
November 29, 2012
 
CALL TO ORDER
Chair David Young called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. in the Civic Center Council Chambers, 1175 E. Main St.
 
Commissioners Present:  Tom Burnham, Mike Gardiner, Pam Hammond, Corinne Vičville and David Young
Commissioners Absent:  Shawn Kampmann
Ex Officio:  Steve MacLennan, Brandon Goldman
Staff Present:  Scott Fleury and Jodi Vizzini
 
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Commissioners unanimously approved the October 25, 2012 minutes as corrected. 
 
PUBLIC FORUM
No one came forward to speak.
 
ACTION ITEMS
A.    Request for Removal of the Two Hour Parking Restriction along ‘A’ St.
Staff Report
Scott Fleury briefly outlined the request from Plexis Healthcare Systems, Inc. to remove the two hour parking restriction on eight parking spaces on ‘A’ Street near the headquarters building.  He called attention to a 2005 request and approval by the Traffic Safety Commission to implement two hour parking restriction in the referenced area when the ‘A’ Street Marketplace was operational. He concluded with staff’s recommendation to leave the current parking prohibitions in place and added a future downtown parking and multi-modal circulation study will address parking issues in the downtown corridor and the railroad district.
 
Chris Hollewijn/ Plexis Healthcare Systems, Inc. / 340 Oak St. /Stated the main reason for the two hour parking restriction removal request was based on the need to increase parking for 75 employees during business hours. He explained the parking lot provides 43 spaces, leaving many employees competing for parking in the surrounding area which ultimately affects business and productivity. He added employees are respectful of other businesses in the area and carpooling and other modes of transportation are encouraged.  
 
Commissioners Questions/Comments
Mr. Hollewijn was asked if eight (8) additional parking spaces would make a difference. He stated any additional parking spaces would be helpful. A comment was made that there would be no way to guarantee that Plexis employees would have access to the parking spaces as they would not be designated for the business. Mr. Hollewijn agreed and added the area is fairly empty at 8:00 a.m.  A question was asked regarding who is ticketing if Diamond Parking is not required to monitor this area. Mr. Fleury clarified that Diamond Parking monitors this area when called to do so by the City.
 
Brent Thompson/582 Allison St./Supported Mr. Hollewijn’s request to remove the parking restriction on the north side of ‘A’ Street.  He felt the two hour restriction should remain on the south side of ‘A’ Street.  Mr. Thompson disclosed he is the owner of the old Cantwell building property.
   
Commissioners Burnham/Hammond m/s to approve the request to remove the two hour parking restriction along the north side of ‘A’ Street along the Plexis building.  DISCUSSION: Commissioner Burnham stated the Commission should be flexible and adjust parking as business needs change. Commissioners added the area is an important commercial zone for many businesses and events, and felt that parking restrictions should not follow a building use.  Concern was voiced about the potential for local businesses to move out of the area because of employee parking challenges and emphasis was placed on the need to study and solve the parking issue in the downtown corridor.  Recommendation was made to leave the parking as-is until the completion of the future downtown parking and multi-modal circulation study as proposed in the Transportation System Plan update. Commissioner Young asked for a show of hands in favor of the motion to remove the two hour parking restriction along the north side of ‘A’ Street along the Plexis building.  Commissioners Burnham and Hammond, YES.  Commissioners Gardiner, Vičville and Young, NO.  Motion failed 2 – 3.
 
B.    Request for a 15 Minute Parking Space at 222 ‘A’ St.
Staff Report
Mr. Fleury briefly outlined the 15 minute parking space request from Garrett Furuichi of Deux Chats Bakery.  Staff’s recommendation was to leave the current parking time restrictions in place on ‘A’ Street until the future parking study of the downtown is completed.
 
Commissioners Questions/Comments
Commissioners discussed the official wording of the signage in the 15 minute parking zones and how the existing 15 minute parking zones are utilized.
 
Brent Thompson/582 Allison St./Stated he supported the 15 minute parking space request by Deux Chats Bakery.  He added people tend to respect the 15 minute parking zones and felt they work adequately.
 
Commissioners Gardiner/Vičville m/s to follow staff’s recommendation to take no action until completion of the future downtown parking study.  DISCUSSION: Commissioners discussed how other 15 minute parking zones in the vicinity are working.  A comment was made that having a 15 minute parking space directly in front of a business seems like a personal space.  More discussion took place on the lack of enforcement in the railroad district. Commissioner Young asked for a show of hands in favor of the motion to follow staff’s recommendation to take no action until completion of the future downtown parking and multi-modal circulation study.  Commissioners Gardiner, Hammond, Vičville and Young, YES.  Commissioner Burnham, NO.  Motion passed 4 – 1.
 
C.    Central Ave. Traffic Improvement Request
Staff Report
Mr. Fleury gave an overview of the staff report and recommendation to extend the yellow curb striping on Central Avenue.  He directed attention to a 2005 staff report that was not included in the Commission packet.
 
Commissioner Questions/Comments
Commissioners asked questions about safety, sight distance issues, ingress and egress and center line striping.  Mr. Fleury clarified the parking restriction will only be added to the downhill, south side of Central Avenue.
 
Commissioners Vičville/Gardiner m/s to follow staff’s recommendation to extend the yellow curb striping prohibiting parking an additional 20 feet on the south side of Central Avenue.  DISCUSSION:  Commissioner Vičville expressed potential problems could be eliminated without losing much parking. Commissioner Gardiner felt it would address conflict on the hill.  Commissioner Young asked for a show of hands in favor of the motion to follow staff’s recommendation. The motion passed with a unanimous vote (5 – 0).
 
D.    Commission Open Discussion
A question was asked regarding the procedure which follows after the Commission approves action items.  Mr. Fleury explained the Commission’s recommendations are passed on to the Public Works Director who is designated by the City Council to approve or veto the recommendation.  He added if there is a broader implication the Public Works Director may take it to City Council.  Senior Planner, Brandon Goldman, clarified that recommendations with land use implications may require review by the Planning Commission.
 
Commissioner Young departed from the agenda and moved to the non action items.  The Commission returned to this part of the agenda at 7:28 p.m.
 
Further topics of discussion were as follows:
Commissioners briefly discussed the application process involved with updating the City’s bike friendly status. Other topics of discussion included:
  • Process involved with updating the city’s Bike Friendly Community status
  • Status of updating the bicycle municipal code
  • Cycle Oregon grant applications
  • Progress of appointing a new Transportation Commission member
  • Bike path intersection at N. Mountain St.
  • Newly installed crosswalk on E. Main St.
  • Status of repairing the damaged crosswalk on Siskiyou Blvd.
  • Audible signals/crosswalks
  • Miscellaneous concrete improvement issues in the railroad district corridor
  • Bike light at the I-5 Exit 14overpass intersection
  • Bike sharrows on E. Main St.
NON ACTION ITEMS
A.    N. Main/Hersey/Wimer Intersection Realignment Update
Mr. Fleury summarized the next steps of the realignment project which included the completion of the alley connection from N. Main St. to Lori Lane and installation of a mountable curb on Hersey St.
 
B.    Walker Ave. Rail Crossing Improvements
Mr. Fleury gave an update on the rail crossing improvement schedule.
 
C.    Road Diet Striping Project
Mr. Fleury briefly described improvements to the road diet project which included adding bike sharrows and additional signage.  Other improvements include working with Stone Medical to solve access issues, removing misdirected turn arrows in the center turn lane and the possibility of ODOT improving compatibility beyond the railroad trestle on Highway 99.
 
Officer Steve MacLennan shared information on traffic related issues since the restriping project was implemented.  He voice concern about the merger at Helman St./Bush St., the conflicting turns at Stone Medical which resulted in a couple of accidents and the project end at the viaduct.   He added bicycle traffic has increased and he felt traffic was flowing smoother.
 
D.    Main St. / Winburn Way/ Water St. Intersection Analysis
Mr. Fleury gave an update on the progress of the contract with Southern Oregon Transportation and stated once it is finalized the analysis of the intersection will begin.
 
E.    Traffic Crash Summary
Officer MacLennan reported no major accidents occurred in the past month.  He shared information on a bike crash that had recently occurred on Tolman Creek Rd. near the Goodwill Industries building.  (October Vehicle Crash Summary is attached.)
 
INFORMATIONAL ITEMS
Action Summary
Did not review.  Informational item only.
 
Traffic Safety Connection October/November Newsletter
Did not review.  Informational item only.
 
Road Diet Citizen Comments
Commissioners briefly reviewed the comments included in the packet.
 
NEXT MEETING DATE
The Commission unanimously agreed to cancel the December meeting. 
 
ADJOURNMENT
Meeting was adjourned at 7:45 p.m.
 
Respectfully submitted,
Jodi Vizzini, Public Works Assistant
 
 

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