Salem, Ore. — This month, visitors to Minto Brown Island Park’s dog park and primary parking area at the end of park road will see evidence of some preparation for upcoming parking lot paving projects. With proceeds from the voter-approved Safety and Livability Bond, the City will begin design work for paving at two parking lots within the park. The paving projects, at Parking Lot #2 (dog park area) and Parking Lot #3 (main lot), include needed storm drainage improvements for retaining and treating stormwater, ADA upgrades to the lots with connections to trails and pathways, landscaping around the new perimeter of the lots, and bicycle parking. Construction will begin in the fall of 2023, with the goal of avoiding major impacts on park users.
The storm drainage work is important because paving creates an impermeable or hard surface that water cannot penetrate. Water that collects on the newly paved parking areas will need a place to collect, drain, and treat the stormwater runoff.
Salem’s Bond Oversight Committee meets monthly to consider progress on Salem’s Safety and Livability Bond. Membership of the Committee includes Mayor Chris Hoy, Councilors Stapleton and Varney, and community members Bob Cortright and Mike Herron. Councilor Nishioka serves as an alternate. Bond Oversight Committee meetings are streamed live to Salem’s public meeting channel on YouTube.
The City plans to deliver a steady stream of projects over the next ten years out of Salem’s Safety and Livability measure, passed by voters in November 2022. In addition to fire trucks and equipment, the bond includes investments in Salem’s streets, sidewalks, parks, two new fire stations to improve response times, affordable housing, purchase of sites for affordable housing and branch libraries, cybersecurity for City operations, and Civic Center seismic improvements. Because payments for existing bonds are decreasing in the future, and refinancing opportunities, the measure is not expected to increase Salem’s bond tax rate above the current rate of $1.20/$1,000 of assessed value.