Downtown revitalization design, annexations on council agenda 

Photo by Kenneth Roberts

Main Street’s Revitalization

Design criteria for the Main Street Revitalization Project was discussed during a work session held an hour before the regular city council meeting Monday at City Hall.

The City Public Works & Development Director Faye Stewart gave an update on the necessary design elements that are pending direction and approval from council, which were not finalized in the 2015 Main Street Refinement Plan (MSRP).

The plan has been adopted by council with much of the project scheduled to begin by Spring 2024. The project includes a variety of improvements throughout the five-block stretch. Branch Engineering is ready to finalize construction drawings for street and sidewalk widths, which will provide guidance for the addition of bulb-out corners for Americans with Disabilities Act compliance, and location planting of street trees.

Council was later advised by Stewart during the regular meeting that it is very important that they give direction after discussion on the three designs. A timeline imposed from the Economic Development Administration (EDA) on the approved project decision must have the project under construction by Feb. 28, 2024.

It will take Branch Engineering approximately 11 months to complete the construction documents with an additional 4-6 weeks to solicit bids for construction.

With the award of the $1.67 million dollars by the EDA for the construction of a new park entry plaza at Bohemia Park, Stewart recommended to council that they approve Task Work Order #1 from Branch Engineering to develop construction documents for the project, not exceeding the amount of $210,000.

The order includes preliminary and final engineering, oversight, inspection and as-built plans. On Task Work Order #2, Stewart also recommended that council approve the order to develop construction documents for the MSRP, in the amount not-to-exceed $940,000. The city was awarded $5 million by the EDA to reconstruct Historic Downtown Main Street from 8th Street west to Main Street Bridge.

Once the EDA approves the documents for the MSRP, bids will be solicited in January 2024 with construction scheduled to commence the following month. The proposed cost of the documents included preliminary and final engineering services, construction engineering, oversight, inspection, closeout and as-built plans.

After some discussion on the variations of design elements, the council voted to approve both of the work orders to be signed by the City Manager unanimously.

Public Hearing for Annexation Ordinance

The City of Cottage Grove has received an Expedited Annexation application by the property owners of Hillcrest Market, located approximately 150 yard south of the current city limits.

“The purpose of this annexation application is both to accomplish the transfer of the jurisdiction of the right-of-way from Lane County to the City of Cottage Grove and to establish contiguous incorporated city limits to lands designated “Commercial” in the Cottage Grove Comprehensive Plan Map,” according to a city document presented by City Planner Eric Mongan.

A hearing was set to receive public comments on the proposed annexation of approximately 900 linear feet of right-of way — located on South 6th Street between Cleveland Avenue to the north and Taft Avenue to the South. One citizen who spoke at the hearing who lives nearby.

He commented on the speed limits posted near Hillcrest Market, with at least one death occurring within the last year due to speeding traffic. The citizen suggested posting visible signs once the procedure begins to perhaps reduce the possibility of accidents or fatalities.

Mongan revealed that the property owners of Hillcrest Market are planning on building a new convenience store in its place with an attached gas station. With other property owners nearby the annexation area largely consenting to the work involved in writing, and a plan for adequate services and infrastructure in place, the criteria is met for the project to begin after the closing of the hearing.

Councilor Mike Fleck moved to adopt the ordinance, with a second by Councilor Jon Stinnett. After the City Recorder Mindy Roberts called the roll, holding on the first vote, the ordinance passed unanimously.

Resolution Amending the Comprehensive Fee Schedule

According to a city memo, “the City Council has established a Comprehensive Fee Schedule which was created to include a listing of fees for various goods or services provided by the city.” Several items on the schedule have been updated to reflect various fee increases in local government agencies, such as the Cottage Grove Library credit card usage fees, and returned checks for insufficient funds from $25 to $35, to reflect the bank's increase.

SDC fees for local improvements in the city’s wastewater and utilities were amended to increase the charges for a new 3/4” water meter from $275 to $350 and a 1” water meter from $325 to $400, reflecting the actual cost of the meters including antennas. The new schedule also changes references to keys to access devices used at the Community Center and Armory, which now have new control systems in place that require cards or fobs to enter the buildings and their rooms.

New language will replace keys with access devices. Special events put on by the city will require the same terminology for the use of canopies stored in places that require access devices.

It is recommended by Public Works Director Faye Stewart to adopt the amended resolution for the Comprehensive Fee Schedule. Councilor Fleck moved to adopt the resolution with a second by Councilor Greg Ervin who noted that he could live with the SDC fees, citing bank fee increases as a common practice. Mayor Candace Solesbee thought the fees seemed high suggesting caution moving forward. After discussion and the recorder calling the roll, the resolution amending the Comprehensive Fee Schedule passed unanimously.

For additional information on the Cottage Grove City Council meeting and other items discussed and voted on prior to the regular agenda session, please visit: