City council: No parking on 24th north of Main

Benny Westcott

The Sweet Home City Council on June 13 unanimously approved a resolution prohibiting parking on 24th Avenue north of Main Street.

The portion of 24th in question, described in a request for council action as “a relatively small (40 feet wide) roadway that is only one block long,” sees quite a bit of traffic and is preparing for more.

It already grants access to the Public Works Department’s maintenance yard, which is used by city crews and equipment and contains a refueling station for Sweet Home School District Transportation Department buses.

Earlier this year, the Lebanon-based Family Assistance and Resource Center Group opened a managed outreach and community resource facility immediately to the yard’s west.

An easement connects it to 24th Avenue.

The Linn County Parks & Recreation Department has planned a recreational vehicle sanitation dump and water-fill station next to the facility, which will result in further traffic.

According to the request for council action, none of the businesses or properties along this stretch of 24th require on-street parking, as all have sufficient lots.

Community and Economic Development Director Blair Larsen said that increased illegal RV and car camping in the area also factored into the city staff’s recommendation.

The resolution passed 6-0. Councilor Dylan Richards was not present. The rest of the council voted 4-2 to not excuse his absence, led by Mayor Susan Coleman, President Pro Tem Greg Mahler, and councilors Dave Trask and Lisa Gourley. Councilors Josh Thorstad and Angelita Sanchez voted in favor of excusing Richards.

In other action, the council:

— Conducted the third and final read of an ordinance vacating the city’s right-of-way at a 500-foot unimproved, dead-end portion of Redwood Street, located north of Highway 20 and west of 53rd Avenue.

A staff report noted that the street contained no public infrastructure, pavement, curbing, storm drainage or any other component of a typical right-of-way. The properties abutting this portion of Redwood currently use a private access easement off 53rd.

According to the report, topographical constraints would make the vacated portion expensive. A severe 15- to 30-foot grade difference on 53rd’s west side would require a large amount of fill and retaining walls, making street development cost-prohibitive.

— Conducted the third and final read for an ordinance changing the city’s comprehensive plan map designation of 280 city-owned acres, the school district and the Sweet Home Fire and Ambulance District from the commercial central and highway, residential low-, medium- and high-density and mixed-use employment zones to the public facility zone.

— Conducted the third read for an ordinance changing the city’s zoning map designation of 425 city-owned acres and the school and fire districts from the commercial central and highway zone, recreation commercial zone, residential low-, medium- and high-density and mixed-use employment zones to the public facility zone.

A third and final read was also conducted for an ordinance updating the adoption section of the Sweet Home Municipal Code to stay current with city procedures on the compilation of the code and updating verbiage in other parts to be consistent with the new zoning code.