Jon us for the September General Meeting

September General Meeting Focuses on Street Improvements

Join us September 13, in person, 6:30-8:30pm
First United Methodist Church, 1376 Olive St.
COVID Protocol: if you are feeling ill, please stay home and get well. The meeting space is large and airy with high ceilings. Masks are not required, but feel free to wear one if you wish.

On the Agenda:
  • W. 8th Street Repaving Project, Reed Dunbar, Senior Transportation Planner, Catherine Rohan, Associate Transportation Planner.
  • Eugene’s 4th Street Bond Measure, Katie Marwitz, Principal Engineer, AIC
W. 8th is finally getting repaved from Monroe to Garfield in 2023 under the current Street Bond Measure. The road surface is in terrible shape and almost impassible for cyclists. The city is also adding bike lanes. The JWN had requested a speed study (upcoming) and safer crossing at Van Buren by New Frontier Market, especially since speeds will potentially increase after the road is resurfaced.

We had originally requested a stop sign and crosswalks by New Frontier Market. However, stop signs are not used to reduce speeds but only to mitigate conflicts between vehicles at intersections. Instead, the plan is to create gateway curb extensions (as in the example above) and a crosswalk on the west side of the intersection. Pinch points narrow the road, reducing vehicle speeds and shortening the distance between curbs for pedestrians. The city also is exploring increasing the street lighting. We are requesting the addition of street trees instead of rain gardens, as trees have more beneficial environmental effects. In addition, street trees reduce how fast people drive. Other speed mitigation could include “speed cushions” or “raised intersections,” similar to the one at Jefferson and W. 15th, providing additional steps are needed. This refresh of W. 8th should improve safety, the aesthetics of this heavily used road, and open up the possibility of other improvements like a street mural.

Also under discussion is the upcoming Street Bond Measure. On July 13, 2022, the Eugene City Council placed a $61.2 million general obligation bond on the November 8, 2022, ballot. The bond proceeds would be used to fund capital pavement preservation, safety projects focused on biking and walking, and street trees. The $61.2 million total is for five years, accounting for $11.3 million per year for five years at an inflation factor of four percent.City property taxes would be collected to pay for the bonds. The bond measure is expected to cost an average of $0.63 per $1000 of assessed value each year for five years. This rate is consistent with the average tax rate levied over the five years of the 2017 bond measure.  For an average homeowner in Eugene, that would be about $169 per year. The taxes would first be levied in November 2024 after the 2017 street bond taxes end in 2023.

The JWN Executive Board sent a letter to City Council requesting that a larger percentage of Street Bond Measure funds get dedicated to active transportation (nonmotor vehicles) projects, including sidewalks and bike lanes.