FAN General Meeting October 23rd|
By Bernie Corrigan, FAN Board Co-Chair Once again it is Fall and time for the October general meeting and FAN Executive Board position elections. The meeting is from 7 to 9 PM at the Washington Park Recreation Center at 2025 Washington. If you have ever wanted to be on the FAN Executive Board now is your chance. If you are wondering about the duties of a Board member please contact Bernie Corrigan for information at 344-3601 or Carlos Barrera at 344-5599. Carlos Barrerra will be discussing the FAN sidewalk infill project. People who live in FAN and are interested in installing a sidewalk along their street frontage should attend. We have developed a tax deductible method of financing such sidewalks. Rick Grosscup will be leading a presentation of Community Emergency Response Training (CERT) assets in FAN and in the Eugene community and a discussion of how this is relevant to FAN residents.
FAN garage/yard sale a success|
By Rick Grosscup, FAN Board From Friday, July 25th until the FAN picnic on Sunday, July 27th, 47 households in our neighborhood held a sale of their excess goods to the whole community. The contemporaneous and e-mail feedback have resoundingly said that it was a great community event. Of the survey e-mail respondents most reported over 100 shoppers and $2 to $300 in sales. More than just selling stuff (and buying a few new items), it became a great community event; bringing people out to meet neighbors that they never had a chance, or reason, to introduce themselves to before! The follow-up recycling with NextStep and St. Vincent de Paul, as well as the terminal dumpster recycling, had the next highest marks from participants. Having the picnic at the end was also a plus, indicating how this all came together. Survey participants came up with suggested improvements for next year's event, yes...mark your calendars for the last weekend in July for the 2nd Annual FAN Sale & Recycling event and neighborhood picnic. Recommendations for next year include having a Picadilly-style site for people with just a few items, holding an additional sale (Spring cleaning?), effecting better signage & map distribution, and improving the Free area to enhance local "recycling". If you missed the sale this year and would like to be included in the list of those who will receive email notices in the Spring, drop an e-mail to that effect to email@example.com or drop a note to 2540 Lincoln Street. Also, those who did not reply to the survey and would like to make suggestions, use the same communications. Special Thanks to St. Vincent de Paul, NextStep Recycling, and Sanipac for their support of the event!
The Kiosk Builders|
By Nancy Ellen Locke, FAN Board FAN residents & Lane ESD Summer School students recently combined their efforts to construct and install a community information kiosk in Friendly Park. The students purchased supplies to build the kiosk, analyzed blueprints and converted them into a plan of action, measured and planed lumber, and cut dadoes. A Lane ESD teacher supervised the 11 students. He spent approximately 40 hours in communication; purchasing materials, teaching students how to complete the project, and supervising their work efforts. The students combined working time was about 80 hours. Lane ESD also secured a donation of $850 from Jerry's Home Improvement to purchase materials to construct the kiosk. After the Lane ESD stage of the project was finished, Marv Glover & Company finished building the kiosk. Andrew Fisher was the metalsmith who fabricated the supports for the kiosk. Greg Giesy & Company laid the pavers. Many others lent a helping hand. The final hours, costs, and details for this project have yet to be totaled. A special Thank You to everyone who contributed to the kiosk project!
Community Emergency Response Training (CERT) and you!|
By Rick Grosscup, FAN Board When your home is on fire it is too late to buy a fire extinguisher. When a wind storm takes out the electricity and streets it is too late to buy candles, flashlights or food. If an earthquake destroyed part of a superb, but antiquated water system it might be too late to buy up water to see you through the days that followed. If a personal emergency should cause you to be taken from your home unconscious by an ambulance, it would be too late to tell a neighbor how to contact your family. We have to prepare for such contingencies individually and as neighbors! To help us understand how to prepare, Joe Rizzi, the City of Eugene Emergency Preparedness Coordinator, and Rebecca Roby of the American Red Cross will present from 8:00 to 9:00 PM at the FAN October 23 General Meeting. Joe will present Building and Strengthening Disaster Readiness Among Neighbors. Using the concept of "Map Your Neighborhood" he will present: 9 steps to take following a disaster by individuals and neighbors, building neighborhood skills, gathering an inventory of equipment among neighbors, and useful techniques and signage to use. The American Red Cross wrote the book on how to respond to, and therefore how to prepare for, unexpected occurences. While is is just part of what they do, their experience and expertise is bar-none. Rebecca will present their "Together We Prepare Oregon" program. It covers how to make an emergency plan, build up a disaster supply and first aid kit, put your financial affairs in order, take care of your pets, adjust your mental health to deal with disasters, and provide help to others. She will distribute a guide book covering these subjects and how to deal with specific disasters (fires at home, severe storms, floods, earthquakes, terrorism, hazardous materials and volcanoes). It is always best to prepare for something before it happens, rather than afterwards. Neighbors who plan together live better. Be prepared!
FAN business directory in works|
By Rick Grosscup, FAN Board FAN plans to publish a business directory of our neighborhood. While we can find the storefront businesses, we are seeking residents who sell their services - not just from their homes - but in the Eugene area. Contact Rick at firstname.lastname@example.org for info.
Madison Meadow board seeks community input, new members|
By Marina Hirsch, FAN resident Seven-member Madison Meadow Board, enjoys long walks at dusk in the Meadow, active and engaged, seeks seven new members for long-term partnership. Expertise in web design, landscaping, architecture, facilitating meetings, secretarial skills, organizing community events, and/or a connection to local schools and education issues a plus. Serious fundraisers need not apply (been there, done that). Meetings are infrequent (once a month or possibly less), and always include snacks! Call 683-3430, or email email@example.com if your interest is piqued. Seriously, the Madison Meadow Board is seeking new members, and is also inviting community involvement in determining a master plan for the Meadow's future. Issues under discussion will include selecting native plantings, identifying and addressing neighborhood wishes and concerns, and attracting and coordinating volunteer efforts. An experienced facilitator, Julie Fischer (who's also lent her expertise to FAN meetings), has offered to help out at Board meetings; expect meetings to be focused and efficient. Fundraising for the Meadow is finally drawing to a close, with only $1,500 left to go, according to Board Member Susan Jerde. There will be continuing costs to maintaining the Meadow, probably on the order of less than $1,000 per year, for maintenance, insurance, legal issues, tax filing, and the like. Funds for education and community events are, of course, always welcome. For more information on the Meadow, visit www.madisonmeadow.org, or check the bulletin board at the Meadow itself; the board features a full-color newsletter, updated every other month.
Security improvements to College Hill Reservoir|
Submitted by Jeannine Parisi, EWEB Community and Local Government Outreach Coordinator In January 2007, the EWEB Board reviewed alternatives for improving security at the College Hill reservoir, a key asset to the city's drinking water system, while maintaining public access to the site. The Board selected a slightly modified version of the Friendly Area Neighbors' recommendation that limited fencing to the Head House and fortified the resevoir surface to protect underlying drinking water from contamination. The Board also directed staff to remove vegetation to improve visibility as an additional security feature. Since the Board took action, staff has met with neighborhood representatives, astronomy club members and a crime prevention specialist from the Eugene Police Department to discuss landscape management changes. EWEB landscape crews then carried out the vegetation trimming to improve visibility and reduce hiding places on the property. Staff has also met with our engineering consultants regarding the surface protection project (sealing the roof slabs and armoring the expansion joints between the roof slabs with steel plating). It was determined that due to existing cracking in the slabs, a flexible slab topping system would be required to prevent the cracks from propagating through the surface. Flexible or elastomeric toppings are significantly more costly than the sealants originally envisioned for the project. The estimated cost for the work has tripled from original estimates (from about $350,000 to $1,050,000). Due to cost increases and the logistical constraints associated with a construction project on top of our drinking water supply, the project has been broken into two phases and costs spread over three budget cycles. The EWEB Board approved this proposal on September 16th. The south half of the reservoir will be sealed and the head house security measures conducted beginning this October. The public will still have access to the north side of the reservoir during the majority of the project. Work on the first phase of the project is anticipated to be complete by mid-April. Next steps will include installation of a pet waste station/garbage container in partnership with City Parks and resurfacing the North side of the reservoir (winter 2009-2010). Please contact Jay Bozievich, EWEB Water Engineer, with any additional questions about the project at 684-4759.
Editorial: New track & field project at Arts & Technology Institute|
By Nancy Ellen Locke, FAN Board The Eugene School District 4J has been working on a new track and field project at the Arts & Technology Institute, formerly Jefferson Middle School. Construction crews are: -excavating, grading and compacting to install gravel, sand and a synthetic turf and rubberized track materials.
-installing subsurface drainage features and stormwater conveyance components.
-constructing paved access roads for emergency vehicles.
-installing a perimeter fence, maintenance and equipment storage sheds and concession stands. The Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) reviewed the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) permit application #2008-000224. The Department of State Lands (DSL) and the City of Eugene were also involved in the permit process before the project began. "Approximately 2.31 acres of wetlands will be permanently impacted as a result of the project. Compensatory mitigation for these permanent losses will be accomplished off-site through the purchase of credits at an approved mitigation bank that services the area." Because this project impacts tributary water to Amazon Creek, a review of the Amazon Creek water quality is also factored into the permit process. It seems that the Amazon Creek is polluted with Cadmium, DDT, Dioxins, Lead and many other unsavory things. The Amazon Creek is listed as "unsafe" for fish, aquatic life and human health. (document 7.4 MB PDF) If you are willing to put the possibility of lead dust on the synthetic turf aside - without gagging - please consider the studies at Brigham Young University in 2002 (http://cahe.nmsu.edu/programs/turf/documents/brigham-young-study.pdf) that showed synthetic turf absorbed and held heat better than black asphalt. Have we created a hot spot in our neighborhood without factoring in global warming? Since synthetic turf may need to be cooled down with water on hot days and washed with water and a cleaner for regular maintenance (artificial turf care: http://www.turf.uiuc.edu/hort436/Lec 14.stm) just how much water are we really saving? There still remains a 2.68 acre piece of 4J property on the corner of Fillmore Street and 24th Avenue that is undeveloped. There is a vernal (springtime only) pond on that land. Could this space be transformed into native plant garden area for and by the students of the Arts and Technology Academy and/or local interested neighbors and with the cooperation of the City of Eugene? After creating an artificial space, can we also create an area that brings us closer to nature? The track and field project was slated to be finished the first part of November. However, due to the complicated process with the perits and a few other factors, the timeline may stretch into March of 2009. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) maintains a web page on potential exposure to lead in artificial turf (http://www.cdc.gov/nceh/lead/artificialturf.htm).
Friendly residents sharing ideas on sustainability|
By Lorna Baldwin, FAN resident A recent ad in the FAN newsletter brought together five women interested in addressing the issue of sustainability in our neighborhood. Here is what we have come up with so far: - A chance for neighbors to share unwanted fruit via "Pick-me" signs placed in three local markets that neighbors can hang on street-side fences or trees. Apple/plum sauce in the winter- yum! (If you'd like to have a sign delivered, call 683-1155). - A workshop on how to save vegetable seeds. The Seed Ambassadors, Sarah and Andrew, have traveled through northern Europe seeking open-pollinated varieties that can be grown successfully here during the winter. Beside sharing what they've learned and giving us seeds to take home, they showed participants how to thresh and winnow. See http://www.seedambassadors.org/index.htm for their free, downloadable, information-packed booklet. The next opportunity will be a Lawn-to-Garden workshop on Sunday, October 19, starting at 2:00. It is easy to establish a small garden plot at your home if you have an area that gets at least 6 hours of direct sun. If you are dreaming of a garden next spring the best time to start is this fall when leaves are available. The talented presenter Devon Bonady has been practicing and teaching permaculture for 8 years and owns the Fern Hill Nursery, which offers high quality edible, native, and medicinal plants. To register, please call 683-1155. Donations will be accepted. We also hope to have a handout on building healthy soils based on the ideas of Merry Bradley, coordinator of Food for Lane County's Grass Roots Garden. The garden produces 50,000 pounds of vegetables each year for hungry people in Lane County on just 2 acres with one full-time employee and many volunteers. Volunteers are always welcome to come and lend a hand. So far the workshops are being held in our back yards. We have been having fun, and everyone who has attended has learned a lot. Think about forming a group in your area around an issue of sustainability that matters to you! And if there are sustainability topics you would like to know about or expertise you would like to share, we'd be happy to organize other workshops.
Building FAN neighborhood for challenging times|
By Doug Black, Coordinator, Post Carbon Eugene & FAN resident On August 9th the clouds parted for Eugene's FAN 2008 Green Home Tour. Congratulations to the several dozen bikers who covered the undulating South Eugene contours to discover more on permaculture home design (such as passive and active solar power) and build priceless dialogue with new friends and neighbors. More on this revealing bike tour is featured here: www.relocalize.net/moving_in_with_the_future_eugenes_friendly_area_neighborhood_2008_green_home_tour A short "to-do" list for building neighborhood sustainability: start your own victory garden, create neighborhood fruit tree gleaning teams, institute your own home permaculture design, form a Voluntary Simplicity (dialogue) Circle (party utilizing abundant bicycle and public transit options), and above all else, engage your neighbors and community leaders. On August 30th Amy Raven and neighbor Julia formed our first two-block party in several years here on Almaden Street. Amy created a neighbor's get-to-know-you profile questionnaire which has had many returns. On short notice nearly half of our neighbors attended the potluck! In Daniel Lerch's guidebook Post Carbon Cities: Planning for Energy and Climate Uncertainty, he stresses the need to "...build a sense of community. In short, do anything you can to get people talking with each other, forming relationships, and investing themselves in the larger community." Solutions in increasingly challenging times come from community dialogue and creativity, and thinking for the greater good of all around us. Eugene's valuable Neighborhood Leadership Council (NLC) created Eugene's NLC Sustainability Subcommittee this year, and we're looking for more city neighborhoods' involvement. For more on valuable community self-reliance resources, including Voluntary Simplicity and Permaculture, please contact me by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (541) 485-6846 or visit www.relocalize.net/group/eugene.
Friendly Place under development|
By Jan Fillinger, Architect and FAN business owner Nearly three years ago, three Neighborhood residents, Mel Bankoff, Jason Elmendorf, and Jan Fillinger, formed CoVision LLC, a partnership with the goal of designing an environmentally sensitive, community-centered development on the one-acre lot at the corner of Friendly Street and 27th Avenue. Bounded to the south and east by commercially zoned lots and to the west and north by residences, this property, zoned under the Municipal Code as C-1 Neighborhood Commercial, permits outright the construction of a wide variety of three-story commercial buildings, including an office building, a manufacturing plant, a healthcare clinic, retail shops, a restaurant, a drug store, a theater, a supermarket, a laundry, an electrical substation or a transit station, or even a church or a synagogue, to name a few. Considerable numbers of parking spaces would be required for any one of these uses, to meet code requirements. Residences, in the form of apartments or condominiums, are a permitted use, as well. However, the C-1 zone allows residential buildings only if they are located on the second and/or third floor ABOVE the retail or commercial spaces enumerated above. The partners, however, felt that the impact of a traditional monolithic urban building surrounded by an expanse of asphalt parking would not mesh well with their idea of a community-centered development harmoniously integrated into the neighborhood. They had a different vision for their property. They believed that if they placed the commercial component of the project to the south, close to the adjoining commercial occupancies (Friendly Market, J-Tea, Dairy Mart, etc.), located the residential buildings to the north and northeast, close to the other neighborhood residences, and situated the majority of required parking clustered in the center, then the development would feel more organically meshed with the social and architectural fabric of its neighborhood. Since this novel configuration deviates from the standards of the C-1 zone designation, the partners have agreed to bring their proposal to a public forum, by means of the Planned Unit Development (PUD) process; a public hearing to this effect is scheduled for September 24. As currently designed the project will include a two-story mixed-use commercial building to the south, containing 5000 sf at the street level, shared by a restaurant and two or three small retail spaces, and 5000 sf of office spaces at the second floor. The northern half of the site will hold three residential buildings, two- and three-story residences that will be laid out in three blocks of four privately owned attached townhomes each, organized around a shared landscaped commons to be enjoyed communally by all the residents. The residences, besides varying in size from 1450 sf to 1900 sf, will be designed in at least six different configurations, and will be wheelchair accessible. Several of the units will be equipped with an elevator, for full universal accessibility. The remainder of the property will be dedicated to code-required parking to accommodate the commercial and residential uses, to code-required landscape buffers, and to vegetated back and front yards for the residences. In keeping with their commitment to a neighborhood-friendly development, the partners have requested a reduction of code-required parking, and have committed to additional landscaping and trees exceeding code-required standards, additional bicycle parking, pedestrian amenities such as sidewalk benches and sidewalk planting beds. The commercial portion of the development will remain under the ownership of CoVision LLC. The residential properties will be sold for individual ownership. The three partners intend each to purchase one townhome for their own use. In keeping with their commitment to environmental stewardship and community-oriented development, the partners have set high sustainability goals for their project, including sustainable materials, non-toxic finishes, exceptional energy-efficiency, large arrays of solar hot water and electricity-producing photovoltaic panels on most of the roofs. The development is proposed to be constructed over a 12- to 18-month period, with a hoped-for start in Spring 2009. In the years that this project has developed, the partners have made several presentations to both the Friendly Area Neighborhood and the Crest Drive Citizens Association and have met with numerous times with individuals and groups of interested neighbors to explain their project, listen and answer questions, and address any concerns. A few neighbors have expressed concern, focused mainly on the issues of increased density and building height in their neighborhood. The partners have made every effort to address as many of the issues as possible, including changing the shape of roof forms and reducing four townhomes from three stories to two stories. Thanks to these efforts, the majority of neighbors have expressed great interest, support, and even enthusiasm for the partners' efforts. The Boards of both neighborhood associations have submitted official letters in support of the project, as have dozens of neighboring business owners and residents.
Exercise and sidewalks and safety, Oh My!|
By Carlos Barrera, FAN Board Co-Chair For several years now, the Friendly Area Neighborhood Association (FAN) has been planning a multi-phased effort to improve safety and the quality of life of its' residents. To build community and good health, we plan to provide walking maps of the neighborhood that will outline routes of varying length and difficulty and which will list points of interest such as historic locations, view points, particular gardens or trees to watch as the seasons change, and home based craft or artist shops that are open to the public. We will encourage residents to team-up with one or more of their neighbors to go on regular walks to increase the likelihood that they will continue to exercise regularly and for the simple enjoyment of good company. Exercise and social interaction are good for one's health in more ways than one. And having more people walking about the neighborhood has been shown to discourage crime, as well. In order to provide safe walking routes, we began mapping all the existing sidewalks and, from that process, learned that there are some large areas without continuous sidewalks as well as some streets that are dangerous to travel for anyone not using a car. So, in order to address these issues, we have developed a plan to begin installing sidewalks where they are needed. Since the City has little or no funds for such a project, we have acquired a $50,000 matching grant and partnered with a nonprofit so that we may accept tax deductible donations. In this way, we hope to be able to complete our first sidewalk infill project without any assessments being charged to the households who may be affected. We have been meeting with various City departments to determine what assistance they can give us and we anticipate that we will be ready to begin installing our first project in the Spring of 2009. Once the exact route has been determined, we will meet with all the affected households to explain the process and to develop a specific plan for the installation of the sidewalk in the public right of way in front of their property. Some plans will be simple and straight-forward and others may require moving sprinkler systems, installing retaining walls, and removing vegetation or other barriers that may be in the public right of way. Keep tuned for a project near you that will bring you greater safety and health and an opportunity to meet your neighbors and enjoy the bounty of our neighborhood. To hear more about these programs or to inquire about making a tax deductible donation to the project, call Carlos at (541) 344-5599 or by e-mail at email@example.com.