Monday, August 19, 2013

Riverside Drive- Draft Sketches- This Tuesday from 4-7 pm

Hi Neighbors.  “Riverside Drive--Draft Sketches” will be on display from 4pm until 7pm on Tuesday, August 20th at Pink Dog Studios, 344 Depot Street. Please feel free to drop in and share your thoughts on the acres the city of Asheville owns along the French Broad and in our neighborhood!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

WECAN August 2013 Board Meeting Minutes • Draft

WECAN Board Meeting August 1, 2013 at 64 Clingman Ave.
Board Members Present were: Jessie Nell Coleman, Joe Fioccola, Rachel Larson and Pattiy Torno . Board Members not present were Byron Ballard, Jeff Carnivale,Tom Gibson, AnnaBeth Hardcastle, Mike Kenton, Yuri Koslen, Luke W. Perry, JoAnn Skinner and Suzanne Willis.  Also present were: Officer Evan Coward, Chip Howe, Tom Gallegher, Hanni Muerdter, David Pearson, Officer Tyler Radford, Rafael Rettig and Marsha Stickford,
    Vice chair Rachel called the meeting to order at 6:38 p.m. with a round of introductions. Marsha distributed a handout about a Remapping the Community event Saturday August 3, 2013 from 1-4 p.m. at the Dr Wesley Grant Sr Southside Community Center to create a community-driven & community-centered, shared map to preserve Asheville's African-American history. (Questions to Priscilla Ndiaye at . The Draft July Board minutes were approved as distributed.
APD CRO Update: Evan talked briefly about a hit and run DWI incident at the Jean Webb Park on Saturday Afternoon. Tyler advised that APD downtown units were working with ALE and ABC units to resolve alcohol violation issues with the Hot Spot at 79 Asheland Ave. He also reported that pedestrian operations in the area had been canceled. He reminded residents to keep reporting issues to Marsha or to CRO's and there would be a response. The question of speeding vehicles on Roberts Street was mentioned again. There was a shooting at Green's Mini mart on Depot Street involving teenagers but witnesses have identified the shooter. Pattiy noted that a rock had been thrown through the window of the Clingman CafĂ©.
NEIGHBOR/BLOCK JESSIE UPDATES:  Luke's house on Club Street has been foreclosed and he will need to vacate in the next few weeks. Hanni reported that the single unit at Clingman Lofts had been sold. Jessie said things had been quiet on Knoxville Place.
RIVERSIDE DRIVE STRATEGIC PLANNING: Tom discussed the two main options for development of city-owned parcels along Riverside Drive.  They amount to 10 acres of lane but due to floodplain, railroad right of way only 50,000 square feet is buildable. (minus the Ice House smokestack.) He showed several options and cross sections showing the transitions from the river to park to RADTIP to pedestrian transition zone to development (ground floor on stilts above the flood line) to parking deck (possibly above the railroad tracks) with one option having an enclosed pedestrian connection to Roberts St. One obstacle besides railroad easements is consideration of  height limitation issues (seven to eight stories are being requested.)  He showed some examples of mixed use development from around the country and world and some ideas for use of the PSNC building at 14 Riverside Drive which include rest rooms, multi-purpose space and alternate proposals for a large deck on the East side that could be a performance space. He announced that a second public meeting would be on the 20th of August then an economic study would be undertaken.  
****(The secretary conducted the balance of the meeting)****
CLINGMAN FOREST GREENWAY: Get any feedback for gateways and motifs to Rachel.
EAST OF THE RIVERWAY CONNECTIONS: Joe attended the Community Design Workshop at the Dr. Wesley Grant Sr. Southside Community Center on Monday July 29. Pattiy, Rachel and Rafael were also there. There was a comprehensive survey for the participants who were there. Joe counted about 50 altogether about half of which stayed to generate ideas for transportation needs after the RADTIP and Riverside plans were built. Their goal is to have a plan drafted by November covering land use and transportation using trend line development or strategic changes along with the usual buzzwords: multi-modal, complete streets, context-centered solutions, and level of service considering proximity  to jobs, healthcare and food. Then in breakout groups ideas were put onto maps. One idea was connecting Vernell Street with Lyman Street Extension  to provide an alternative for east/west traffic as an alternative to already crowded Hilliard or Patton.(which looks easy on a map but has vertical connectivity problems.) Other ideas mentioned were the need for a closer grocery store. (The closest now are FBR Food Coop on Biltmore, Downtown Market on South French Broad and Earthfare at Westgate.) also additional bus routes requested (bypassing downtown to get from UNCA to Biltmore Village via Riverside and Meadow Road) as was a pedestrian bridge connecting Riverside Drive to the west side of the river--possible on the old trolley car bridge footings just south of the Riverlink Bridge. However, besides the meager turnout it was disappointing to have the discussion monopolized by bicycling zealots. One unfeasible idea was to make Riverside Drive one way and route traffic onto Roberts Street. Admittedly the consultants do have to listen to every idea presented but they should be able to focus the discussion. Pattiy reported on a reception for the funders of East of the Riverway. and the part of their purpose they have yet to achieve: building community capacity.
NEIGHBORHOOD ADVISORY COMMITTEE: Joe has been appointed to this committee and they are planning a 'Festival of Neighborhoods' celebration on Sunday October 27 3-5 p.m. at the Sherrill Center at UNCA. They are requesting Asheville neighborhood organizations to showcase their achievements in a tri-fold display card and share ideas with other neighborhoods. There will be a speaker and  maybe door prizes and light refreshments will be served. More info to come in the next month
GENERAL MEMBERSHIP: Joe reviewed  WECAN activity since the last General Membership meeting last December. He expressed his disappointment that so many meetings were dominated by outside groups: Ice House(x2); 100 Park Ave; Cotton Mill; CF Greenway(x2); leaving WECAN limited time to maintain our organizational health. Admittedly these were all issues that have a direct impact on WECAN and because we meet regularly were easily scheduled but they tend push our organizational development to the back burner. Things like nominating At-Large Board members or organizing social gatherings, or a pool party have fallen b y the wayside this year. Pattiy noted that with all the development in the near future the pressure on WECAN will only increase. 
CLINGMAN AVENUE LIGHTING: Marsha reported that all the lights were replaced by D.O.T and if any issues remain to let her know.
COMMUNITY GARDEN:  This is not an urgent priority due to the kudzu's growing season. It would be better to clear the land after frost slows the kudzu growth. Marsha said it is now with Stephanie Monson Dahl and David Foster to work it and other issues out with D.O.T.
OTHER GARDENING ISSUES: Pattiy asked if any landscaping was planned for the new ADC Bridge as she has a source.
GARDEN CLUB: Joe set the next date at the overgrown sign garden at Clingman and Hilliard for Sunday August 4 at 5 p.m. for anyone interested.     
The meeting adjourned at 7:43 p.m.
DRAFT Minutes submitted by Joe Fioccola.

August 2  Fri 6 p.m.                     Pedestrian bridge Ribbon Cutting Ceremony Jean Webb Park   
August 4 Sun 5 p.m.                    Garden Club Weeding Party Clingman and Hilliard
August 6 Tue 5:30 p.m.                National Night Out  Carrier Park: refreshments, displays, prizes.
August 10 Sat                              River Arts District Second Saturdays Ceramics and Sculpture Demonstrations
August 15 Thu  6:30                    Greenworks Root Fest Fundraiser 6:30-9:30 318 Riverside Dr(new location)  

August 23  Fri                              River Music Roots/Bluegrass/Old time @ Craven & Riverside                             
September 5 Thu                         WECAN Board Meeting 6:30 at 64 Clingman Avenue