Saturday, June 09, 2007

Officials to get Hillsdale "Walk-Arounds"

Neighborhood leaders hope that up-c0ming Hillsdale "walk-arounds" with city officials will result to fewer run-arounds in dealing with them later.

Hillsdale Neighborhood Association (HNA) President Don Baack
shared plans to lead officials on walking tours of Hillsdale with the HNA Board on Wednesday, June 6.

On Friday, June 22, Baack and other community leaders will lead City Commissioner Erik Sten and Metro Councilor Robert Liberty on individual tours of the Town Center.

Community members are invited to join in the walks, which take approximately 2 hours.

The Sten stroll will start at Baker and Spice at 9:30 a.m. Liberty walkers will convene at 2 p.m. at the big oak tree near the Capitol Highway entrance to Wilson High School.

City Commissioners Dan Salzman, Randy Leonard and Sam Adams have walked with Baack and others in the past. Baack believes that the recent funding of a fully signaled cross-walk at Capitol Highway and Beaverton-Hillsdale Highway resulted from walks with the commissioners.

This Monday, June 11, a 7:30 a.m. walk with Brian Winchester, the new facilities manager of the Public School District, is scheduled to start from Starbuck's.

Baack said that he and others want to talk with Winchester about installing bike racks near the entrance of the Farmers Market and about parking improvements next to the Wilson Stadium. Parked cars now block pedestrians from using the sidewalk there. Another item on the walking agenda is a Rieke site inspection with an eye to a civic plaza and the placement of temporary buildings

Baack, renowned as a pedestrian advocate, said the walks are intended to familiarize officials with Town Center issues such as the development of a pedestrian loop, the civic plaza, undergrounding utilities and traffic calming.

Officials who have walked around Hillsdale have a much better idea of what is needed here, he said.

"If a picture is worth 1000 words," said Baack, "walk-arounds are worth 2000."

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