« Why Gov. Brown should veto the horrible Oregon wolf bill, HB 4040 | Main | Salem police facility could waste $20 million of downtown urban renewal funds »

March 09, 2016

Comments

I think that Salem already has more than enough agricultural connection. I'd like to see a more cohesive sense of urban planning that embraces the concept of living with others in a vibrant urban area. Features such as a public plaza or square in the downtown could facilitate various activities including Farmers Market, Saturday Market, live music and arts events, a place for political engagement and a place to play chess and checkers. Included could be water fountains and a public restroom. As far as branding goes, identifying as the capital city could be embraced more. Have a festival that celebrates some of the history of Salem and Oregon. The current festivals seem to just be in Salem, rather than celebrate the place and history.

Marc Nelson is indeed a very successful “business lobbyist,” who spends a large amount of time at the Capitol, especially during sessions.

This paper needs to be read very, very carefully, as it contains a lot of nice-sounding but vague language. Here are what I suspect are the most likely important points, from the viewpoint of the writer of the summary --

“Other challenges include difficult development economics; a bureaucracy that too often gets in the way of good development;”
“To do this, it will be important for the key private sector players to contribute towards an effort to . . . develop . . . a strategy incorporating bold moves that dramatically change development dynamics in Salem . . . build consensus from the constituencies that need to support this strategy, to counter the naysayers and to assure that future elected officials won’t deviate from the strategy . . . the strategy should be generated in consultation with the various constituencies that are essential to success, in part to defuse the opposition of any naysayers; in part so that no elected official can deviate from the blueprint.”

And so forth.

I would pay a lot of attention to all the vague-sounding references to “development,” to “bold moves that dramatically change development dynamics in Salem,” and to the frequent carping about “naysayers,” by whom I suspect is meant Salem's livability activists. All the great-sounding but vague references to the condition of the downtown may be just a lot of sleight-of-hand trickery to help sell projects that have little or nothing to do with Salem's downtown or its livability.

Remember that the legislature just passed a law that effectively wipes out individual cities' voters' ability to control annexations, and I would imagine that developers are straining at the bit to be first in line for a fresh flood of municipal taxpayer money to subsidize development of properties currently outside the city boundaries.

The most important thing about this report, is seems to me, would be to uncover the names and connections of those who paid for it. Don't be surprised if that information is not available.

Jack, good points. I had vague thoughts along the same lines as I read the report, but you fitted the quotes together more cogently. Hopefully the identity of the person/people who asked for, and paid, for the report will be known soon. This is necessary if the report is to have credibility.

Sure, the report can be read just for its ideas. But since the goal of the Salem 2025 effort is to create change in downtown, knowing who is behind the report is important in assessing the motivation for those changes.

Imagine if I-5 northbound was plugged into Portland road.
Every vehicle heading north on Interstate 5 had to slow down and follow signs along Portland Road, navigate through downtown Salem, creep along on Commercial Street and finally end up back on the freeway.
Imagine if all traffic southbound on I-5 was plugged into commercial St.
Every vehicle heading south on Interstate 5 had to slow down and follow signs along commercial street, navigate through downtown Salem, creep along on through the bypass and finally end up back on the freeway.
O.K, that scenario is totally preposterous; right? After all, Traffic on Interstate 5 blazes a trail right past our fine city at 60 mph without hardly a notice, doesn't it?

Step one, in the improvement of the downtown core in Salem is to address the east / west HWY 22 traffic in the same manner as I-5.

You can weep, wail and gnash your teeth from here until eternity, but things won't change, until they change.
Our inner city is clogged with intra - interstate commercial traffic as well as commuters, travelers traveling East - West on HWY 22 CLOGGED! And it is only going to get worse unless we address it.
Then and only then will I take an interest. Until then, OUR CITY is a major commercial thoroughfare, intersection.
There is no amount of dreaming or wishing that will wish the problem away.
HWY 22 East and West must be connected and redirected OUT of downtown Salem.

I'm with you there Harry. HWY 22, and 99 for that matter, ought to be expressways through town, with on ramps and off ramps instead of traffic lights. Keep the Semis and other heavy commercial vehicles off of our city streets, and let them get through the city quickly. Then we can work on smaller, more pedestrian and bike friendly, streets downtown.

On the point of branding, I think Salem really ought to go back to its roots. This area was once called Chemeketa. In Kalapuya Chemeketa means, among other things, a meeting place. Build a re-branding effort around that. Chemeketa/Salem a place to gather... or something along those lines.

>>On the point of branding, I think Salem really ought to go back to its roots. This area was once called Chemeketa. In Kalapuya Chemeketa means, among other things, a meeting place. Build a re-branding effort around that. Chemeketa/Salem a place to gather... or something along those lines. <<
John, I LOVE IT and am all for it!

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Strange Up Salem

Welcome to HinesSight

  • Salem Political Snark
    My local political rants are now made on this badass blog. Check it out. Dirty politics, outrageous actions, sleaze, backroom deals — we’re on it. 

  • Twitter with me
    Join Twitter and follow my tweets about whatever.
  • Church of the Churchless
    Visit my other weblog, Church of the Churchless, where the gospel of spiritual independence is preached.

  • Welcome to HinesSight. If this is your first visit, click on "About this site--start here" in the Categories section below.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...