As you are undoubtedly aware, the city of Eugene is working on a new Bike/Pedestrian Master Plan. I know you are excited about that. And this week you can go check out this plan-in-progress with your very own beady little eyes. I know you are excited about that, too.
Yes, there is going to be an Open House on Thursday (March 3) from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at St. Mary Catholic Church Parish Center on 10th Avenue, between Lincoln and Charnelton streets.
It’s just a drop-in thing. You don’t have to get there at 4 p.m., sit down and listen to somebody drone on about Amsterdam for three hours. No, just stop by, look around at parts of the plan as it stands at the moment and let the city know if it is “on the right track.”
(There is a very thorough reporting of the open house and the plan in general here.)
You should go to the open house. Really. Because here is what will happen:
There will be some idea that grows out of this plan that eventually will be funded somehow — perhaps by the city itself, perhaps by a slight-of-hand worked by the Rep. Peter DeFazio, or perhaps because some intrepid city employee writes a grant that wins money from the feds or from ODOT.
There will be news reports about this. The project will go out for public bids. A contract will be awarded to Wildish Construction. And then they will start tearing up the road or building the new bike path or whatever it is.
Then there will be a letter to the editor in the local paper complaining: “Why are they wasting money on this project when they never even asked us if we wanted it in the first place? How come they never ask for input before they go and do this kind of thing?”
So if you have a cantankerous old uncle who writes these kinds of letters or perhaps a sour neighbor who likes to complain thusly, you can tell them about the Open House. You can say, “They did ask. I was there. Where were you?”
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And speaking of bicycle infrastructure improvement projects, we have an update to a post we wrote long ago about the very sketchy route a lot of cyclists were using to get from the River Road area up by the Beltline to the Riverbank Trail.
You may remember this photo, taken last summer, showing a white-jerseyed roadie heading the wrong way up a one-way Beltline off ramp:
Well, the new path here is now under construction. (The following photos are a couple of weeks old, so it may look a little different by now.) And you can see cyclists will have there own parallel route soon.
Here’s another look, looking west from near the entrance to the sand and gravel place:
And finally a little stretch right by the sand and gravel lot’s driveway, here looking back east, toward the river: