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Agenda & Minutes

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Planning Commission (View All)

Planning Commission Study Session Agenda and Minutes

Monday, September 25, 2017

The study session of the Medford Planning Commission was called to order at 12:00 p.m. in the Lausmann Annex Room 151-157 on the above date with the following members and staff in attendance:
Commissioners Present
Patrick Miranda, Chair
David McFadden, Vice Chair
David Culbertson
Joe Foley
Bill Mansfield
Mark McKechnie
E. J. McManus
Jared Pulver
Commissioner Absent
Alex Poythress, Unexcused Absence
Staff Present
Matt Brinkley, Planning Director
Kelly Akin, Assistant Planning Director
Carla Paladino, Principal Planner
Eric Mitton, Senior Assistant City Attorney
20.1        CP-16-036 – Transportation System Plan – Project Lists
Carla Paladino, Principal Planner, stated that staff is working closely with Kittelson and Associates to meet deadlines.  The goal is to have a draft Transportation System Plan by the end of the year.
Super Citizen Advisory Committee will meet for the first time this Wednesday, September 27, 2017.  The Joint Transportation Subcommittee expanded to encompass a broader perspective of the population.  There are approximately 25 members. 
The Technical Advisory Committee will meet on Thursday, September 28, 2017, to discuss the project.
Staff is assembling the survey results their survey monkey launched from August to mid-September.  They received over 1,000 surveys with approximately 25 in Spanish.  The results will be ready for the ward open houses in mid to late October.  Staff will hold open houses in each ward to discuss ward specific projects.  Staff will meet with City Councilors in each ward and their ward representative to discuss larger policy issues such as Level of Service, concurrency, cross sections and flexibility of reconstructing existing streets. 
Commissioner Pulver asked, who is the Technical Advisory Committee and what do they do?  Ms. Paladino reported that it is Oregon Department of Transportation, Central Point, City of Phoenix and City Staff looking at the same things.  Matt Brinkley, Planning Director, stated that they are the potential affected agencies like Rogue Valley Transportation District and other transportation infrastructures.
Ms. Paladino presented the Functional Classification Map.  This identifies all of the higher order streets within the City by type (arterials and collectors) and separates them into major and minor status.  Foothill Road is identified as a Regional Arterial.  Oregon Department of Transportation facilities other than Interstate 5 are also designated as a higher order street as well as new streets needed as the Urban Growth Boundary is expanded.  The collector or arterial designation helps inform the type of cross section staff is proposing to build.  Policy discussion about how to reconstruct higher order streets not fully built out (bike/pedestrian components).
Commissioner McKechnie asked, are some of the classifications new?  Ms. Paladino replied yes.
Major Arterials:
•             Foothill Road
•             Crater Lake Highway and Avenue
•             Biddle Road
•             Central Avenue
•             Columbus Avenue
•             McAndrews Road
•             Barnett Road
•             Stewart Avenue
•             Riverside Avenue
•             Center Drive
There are three cross sections for Major / Regional Arterial:
•             Two travel lanes with a center turn lane, 6 foot bike lanes and planter strips and sidewalks
•             The other one is the same but adds a buffered bike lane.  Foothill Road from Hillcrest to north of the McAndrews ramp will include the buffered bike lane.
•             The last one has separated bike lanes. 
Minor Arterials:
•             W. Main Street / 8th Street
•             South Stage Road
•             Garfield Street (West of Holly)
•             Barnett (East of Phoenix)
•             Table Rock Road
•             Kings Highway
•             Stevens Street
There are two cross sections for Minor Arterials:
•             One travel lane each direction with a center turn lane, 6 foot bike lanes and planter strips and sidewalks
•             Same but has buffered bike lanes
Major Collectors:
•             Oak Grove Road
•             Lozier Lane / Orchard Home
•             Diamond Street
•             West 10th Street
•             W. Jackson Street
•             Bullock Road
•             Spring Street
•             Delta Waters Road
•             Lone Pine Road
•             Siskiyou Boulevard
•             Hillcrest Road
•             Cherry Lane
Major Collectors has one travel lane each direction, landscaped median and bicycle lanes, planter strips and sidewalks.  The other cross section is the same without the landscaped median. 
Minor Collectors:
•             Peach Street
•             Oakdale Avenue
•             Holly Street
•             Holmes Avenue
•             Stevens Street
•             Oregon Avenue
•             Justice Road
•             New Streets in the Urban Growth Boundary
Minor Collectors have one travel lane each direction, bike lanes, parking, planter strips and sidewalks.  The other cross section is the same just expanding the bicycle lanes to 6 feet from 5 feet.
Commercial Streets have one travel lane each direction and parking, planter strips and sidewalks.
Residential Streets are similar to commercial streets just a smaller right-of-way.  Some have no striping.  Minor residential streets have a neighborhood bicycle route.
One of the major components of the Transportation System Plan is the project list.  This helps guide what is built over the next 20 years.  Projects will be separated into Tier 1 and Tier 2 projects.  Tier 1 projects have funding attached to them and are proposed to be built first.
Engineering staff estimates projected revenue based on several funding sources including:
•             State Gas Tax
•             Street Utility Fees
•             SDCs
•             Other Sources (grants, CDBG, MURA)
•             Additional Revenue Source (House Bill 2017)
Estimated revenue is $75.4 million over the 20 year period.  There are more projects than we have funding for.  Projects will have to be prioritized and additional cuts made to the list.
Consultant has compiled the list of projects needed over the planning period based on technical date (prior plan, crashes, congestion, connectivity, new growth).
The projects lists include:
•             Roadway
•             Intersection (new and upgraded intersection projects)
•             Bicycle and Trails 
The next steps:
•             Finalize Goals and Objectives
•             Discuss policy issues (LOS, concurrency, cross section implementation)
•             Organize and hold Ward Open Houses (October)
•             Discuss project prioritization and draft document
Per the project schedule, the draft TSP is due in the next two to three weeks. 
Commissioner Foley asked, how much are they over in Tier 1 projects versus funds available?  Ms. Paladino stated that she does not have that number.  Engineering has indicated they are over. 
Commissioner Foley did not recognize the trails.  Ms. Paladino reported that the trails are identified in the Leisure Services Plan. 
Commissioner McManus stated that he is hoping that in setting the priorities that the existing maintenance plan sets the precedence. How much is Public Works hoping to sustain of the existing priorities that is being evaluated now?  Mr. Brinkley stated that Public Works has a separate process for doing their maintenance.  They go through the entire City every two years and assess the condition of pavement and based on the results of that assessment they determine a list of maintenance projects.  These are capital improvement projects. 
Vice Chair McFadden asked, does this include the County roads within the City that need to be upgraded?  Mr. Brinkley reported that it depends on whether or not the County Roads are slated to come into the City.  As part of the Urban Growth Boundary amendment would bring certain County roads into City jurisdiction.  Those should be included in the Transportation System Plan.
Commissioner McKechnie asked, is Public Works will to do roundabouts?   Mr. Brinkley stated yes they are willing to do roundabouts.  That is their preference when it makes sense operationally and cost.  Roundabouts require more right-of-way acquisitions and can be expensive.  All things being equal it is better to pay more up front on the capital end and not have a signal to maintain.
Commissioner McKechnie asked, does the money that developers have to pay for improving or widening a right-of-way figure into the Transportation System Plan or is the City going to do it regardless of what happens to the adjacent properties?  Ms. Paladino reported that as development occurs there are designated street classifications and the cross section that is going to be built they can tell what amount of right-of-way will be needed for their frontage.  If the City is going to do it in terms of funding it may be noted as a Tier 1 project. If the developer upgrades a classified street (collector or arterial) they are allowed to get SDC reimbursement. That money was also factored in.                        
Commissioner Foley asked, how were Tier 1 and Tier 2 decided?  Ms. Paladino stated that the consultants ranked the projects.  Staff will go back and do them themselves.  They were based on high crash rates, failing intersections, etc.  Mr. Binkley reported that the consultants did the technical analysis of all the intersections and roadways.  There are some road segments where there will be capacity issues.  The same for intersections.  Safety issues were high priority.  It is staff’s understanding that South Stage will be a high priority but City Council may decide it should be a Tier 2 project.  About a week ago at the City Council meeting they discussed the goals and objectives that they used to rank projects. 
Ms. Paladino stated that the Planning Commission will see this and recommend this at some point when it gets to the hearing process.  What can staff provide that will help?  Staff will provide the list in Tier 1 and Tier 2 format.  They will also provide the wards.
Chair Miranda reported that he would be looking for guiding criteria like justification and standards.
Commissioner McKechnie stated a numerical score determining what ended up as a Tier 1 would help him. For example 10 points being a failing intersection and 1 point being okay for 20 years.
Commissioner Pulver would like a list that staff in conjunction with the consultants identified as Tier 1 projects with the next 10 or 20 projects that did not make the cut but are high on the Tier 2 projects list. 
Commissioner Foley stated that it would be helpful to list the type of criteria in an excel format.  He would look at where the biggest needs are.
Commissioner McKechnie stated the problem with North Phoenix/Foothill Road as an alternate to I-5 is North Phoenix/Foothill Road goes due north.  I-5 pretty much goes west northwest.  They have a nice tie-in at the end going south.  It is like Highway 62 Bypass unless there is some plan connection through Central Point to get over to I-5 at some point.  Vice Chair McFadden reported there is at Kirkland and Blackwell Road.  ODOT now owns right-of-way where it used to be Blackwell to Knife River and Bear Creek to Kirkland Road past the old 3M plant into White City.  Most of Agate Road is ODOTs.
Commissioner McManus stated in the tables there are time frames for the intersection projects but there is nothing for the roadways.  Will that change when the draft is presented?  Mr. Brinkley reported that there are intervals for 1-5, 5-10 and 10-20. 
Commissioner Pulver reported that they need to be sensitive to the amount of dollars and the projects.  The dollars are fairly scarce.  There is a big emphasis on multimodal especially bikes.  How many bike riders does the City truly have?  Is the cross sections the best way to service that segment of population?  It is a balancing act of how bad is the need and what they are doing making any sense.  He asked the Planning Commission to keep that in mind. 
Commissioner Foley stated the sign and stripe neighborhood bike ways is the only Tier 1 project listed.  To him that is useless money.  He would rather see it spent on a multimodal path.
Commissioner Pulver asked, the cross sections that end up in the Transportation System Plan update are what is going to be required to build.  He questions how effective, useful, safe and heavily used are bike lanes.
Vice Chair McFadden stated the committees are dealing with people outside the City limits and urban growth boundary.  We are seeing the road diet of north Ashland turning into a road diet all the way to Talent.  His understanding the road diet that is taking four lanes of highway down to two with a center turn lane and bike lanes that will reach to Phoenix.  Is that scheduled to come further?  Will that impact South Pacific Highway between Phoenix and Medford?  Mr. Brinkley reported no.  ODOT adopted the OR 99 Plan two or three years ago.  The diet goes to the south end of Phoenix.  There is a section over Coleman Creek that will get replaced.  It will be five lanes with a shared left turn lane.  Currently, it is four lanes.
Commissioner Culbertson asked, how were the trails identified?  Ms. Paladino stated it was from the City Parks and Recreation Department.  Commissioner Culbertson has a concern with the trail that comes of Hillcrest Orchard goes through the Carpenter property follows the irrigation ditch.  Being a former member of the Medford Irrigation District it is an easement across private land.  They would vehemently fight anyone trying to utilize their easement as a trail.          
30.          Adjournment
The meeting was adjourned at 12:55 p.m.
Submitted by:
Terri L. Rozzana
Recording Secretary


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