The River Road Community Organization (RRCO) involves and represents neighbors to increase the quality of life in the neighborhood.
- Facilitating civic empowerment in decisions affecting our neighborhood. We work with city and county agencies on development and planning. We provide forums to identify, discuss and resolve neighborhood issues and meet with candidates.
- Fostering rich social networks and relationships among neighbors. We host regular social events, encourage neighbors to volunteer in the neighborhood, and participate in work parties.
- Guiding stewardship of the natural world that we enjoy. We collaborate with the city and other non-profits to maintain public space.
By Julie Schaum and Marilyn Mohr
You may have noticed or even received notice lately of new residential infill development in your neighborhood. Infill development is new residential construction in established areas of the city. Infill development has greatly increased due to growth pressures and because it is one solution to achieve greater density within Eugene’s current Urban Growth Boundary. Done well, infill development should maintain the stability, positive character, quality, natural resources, and livability of our residential neighborhoods.
River Road’s large lots and remaining open spaces are being sought after for development. There are currently around 150 newly platted lots available for single family homes, proposed in flag lot partitions of up to 3 lots, or subdivisions ranging from 4 lots to 46 lots.
Here are some things you can do to help insure a proposed new subdivision is compatible with your neighborhood. Review the notice you receive in the mail or see posted in your neighborhood. Consider if the proposed density, character and quality of the homes fit your neighborhood. Will traffic impacts such as vehicular flow, parking and emergency access be properly addressed? Are there efforts to preserve as many trees as possible? How is stormwater proposed to be treated and are the natural waterways and drainages, unique to the River Road area, being preserved?
Also, new to the City of Eugene’s website, you can locate infill developments as they are proposed in River Road. Go to www.eugene-or.gov. Click on Land Use Applications under City Quick Links on the left side of the page. Contact City of Eugene planners or RRCO if you have questions or comments.
We can all help to make sure our coveted neighborhoods grow preserving the characteristics that we desire.
The transformation of River Road between Chambers and Hilliard into a more attractive, green, and pedestrian-friendly boulevard is getting a few steps closer to reality, thanks to the continuing efforts of a Citizen Advisory Committee of area residents working with Eugene city planners. Details are not quite finalized, but it seems likely that the Oregon Department of Transportation will fund some additional planning work starting this summer, and continuing through the following year. A key focus of the planning will be design of an attractive, pedestrian-oriented corridor that promotes the use of walking, biking and transit, and that supports the potential for a higher density mixed commercial and residential district on both sides of River Road in all existing commercial/office zones.
Improved bicycle and pedestrian connectors to the riverbank bike path system will be part of the design. This phase of planning will also include a review of zoning and development codes to ensure they support goals for higher density, pedestrian-friendly, mixed-use development along the corridor, while also protecting adjacent historic and residential housing.
Consultants will work with the Citizen Advisory Committee and local residents to develop plans and get feedback. There will be various public meetings and multiple opportunities for public input and involvement.
In addition, according to the work plan proposed by the Advisory Committee and approved by the Eugene Planning Commission in April, the City and neighborhood organizations will work to complete several other plans and surveys identified as important to area residents. The plans are a Greenway Enhancement Plan focused on protecting and improving habitat and open space along the Greenway, and a Neighborhood Sustainability Plan focused on environmental, economic and social values–including recommendations for things like on-site stormwater management, energy efficiency, and public investments to create public gathering spaces.
The work plan includes a neighborhood survey about residents’ driving habits and their needs and desires for nearby commercial services. Also proposed is a survey of existing commercial businesses, especially about their parking requirements and aimed at helping them develop plans to accommodate parking in a way that is more compatible with an attractive, pedestrian-friendly corridor. It is possible that state funding might cover part of these other plans and surveys, or additional resources might be needed.
All of these plans and survey results will be incorporated into a draft plan for an attractive and distinctive mixed-use corridor. RRCO urges River Road residents to continue to contribute their good ideas and to participate in this dialog with our neighbors (including residents and business and commercial property owners) as we develop a common vision for revitalizing this area of our neighborhood for the benefit of all. For more information about the Rasor MUC project, visit: http://www.riverroadco.org, or http://www.rrcoplanning.ppaponline.org.
Please see the January 28, 2008 attached http://riverroadco.org/files/RRCOreRailyard.pdf letter to Paul S. (Max) Rosenberg, Western Region Cleanup Program Manager, Oregon Department of Environmental Quality. The letter is a follow up and request from the River Road Community Organization to a letter from Mr Rosenberg on November 8, 2007.