Parking and Bump-outs Hot Topics at Sheldon City Council Meeting

Date posted - January 16, 2013

SheldonThe Downtown Infrastructure project was back on the agenda for  Wednesday’s Sheldon City Council meeting.

The council reviewed and discussed a proposed schedule of activity presented by a representative of McClure Engineering.  The first event will be a fifty percent Design Review to be held on February 18th. Much of the council discussion centered on the bump-outs which are being planned for the downtown intersections.  Duane Seehusen voiced his opposition to the bump-outs and questioned how many parking spaces would be lost because of them.  The engineer said he didn’t know the answer, but Public Works Director Todd Uhl  said according to his calculations they would lose 22 parking spots.  Ron Rensink brought up the problem of clearing the snow around the bump-outs.  The engineer defended the design stating that pedestrian safety would be enhanced because the amount of time they would  be exposed to traffic would be decreased.  He also said that the bump-outs would provide easier use by people who are handicapped. After some discussion he was asked if they could be made smaller and agreed to study that possibility.

Council member Brad Hindt mentioned several times that more parking spaces would be available if  Sheldon’s two hour Parking Law was enforced.  Adding that many of the parking spaces are taken by store owners and employees.  Mayor Meendering agreed, stating that she has seen cars  parked in the same location for as long as twelve hours.  She and Police Chief Bolkema agreed to discuss how this parking rule could be enforced.

The council also heard the annual Auditors Report with Tom Hendrickson of Winther, Stave and Company who called it a ‘clean’  report with no findings of  non-compliance. And, they set February 20th as the date for a public hearing on changes in the Urban Renewal Plan and January 29th as the tentative date for a budget session.

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8 Responses to “Parking and Bump-outs Hot Topics at Sheldon City Council Meeting”

  1. Kenny says:

    My employment hours don’t line up with Council meeting times, but I would like to comment on the bump outs. I agree snow removal is already an issue on the streets downtown. I’ve stepped over a foot of snow just to get to the sidewalk in front of stores. with bump outs, I don’t see that improving. Also I see semi trucks unloading in front of a couple of stores. Will they be able to get around easily?

    As for two hour parking, years ago an officer would mark a “suspected violator’s” tires with a chalk stick and come around a couple of hours later to check them. Couldn’t that practice be reinstated?

  2. Crazy City says:

    22 parking spots we’d lose?? That’s crazy!! It’s hard enough to find a spot to park the way it is downtown. Do they honestly think doing this project is going to bring people downtown? No.. what’s going to happen is people from out of town are going to drive down there,, see no spots open,, maybe drive around the block,, still find nowhere to park and say “screw it” and leave town. I hope all the store owners fight this ridiculous money wasting plan. Once again it’s people we’re paying, coming up with stupid ideas that uses our money without the people having a say so in it.
    And on another note… Developing the area near the borrow pit into housing? Who wants to live that close to the 4 lane with all that noise?? And.. having a pit down the road from houses that could have many young children? Shaking my head….

  3. Pro Sheldon says:

    If its good for Sheldon I’m all for it.
    I plan on voting yes when we have the citywide vote to approve this 1.5 million dollar project.

    • johnny rotten says:

      you should get informed of what is going on with this project. there will be no “vote” for you to become distantly involved with. the city wants it to happen so they have reclassified it so that the property owners and buisness owners (and tax payers) have no choice. and your “good for Sheldon” quote? 22 less parking spaces, property tax increace, cost of service and product increase’s and possablity of buisnesses loss of revenue and or there busness entirly because of the out of pocket cost (sum as much as $20,000) and disruption during construction dosnt sound like it is so “good for sheldon” like you may think!

  4. TDS says:

    When was the last time a pedestrian was injured by a vehicle downtown? I know I can’t remember one…the bumpouts providing pedestrian safety is as big of a joke as the idea that this streetscape plan is going to bring people downtown to shop!

    • FFDG says:

      The biggest improvement we could make to our downtown area is to change the angle parking on one side of the streets back to parallel parking on both sides. Our streets are not wide enough for today’s larger pickups and vans. It is hard to see traffic when backing out of an angle parking space and meeting larger vehicles in traffic can be a close fit at times, besides the fact that it looks pretty ridiculous.

  5. Hadaway says:

    Just a question…but what are bump outs?

  6. Concerned Citizen says:

    What’s good for Sheldon is a great attitude to have and I hope it’s never lost, but with that said I hope that nobody just votes yes “just because”. I hope you take the time to make sure it is really is the best thing for the people of the community. At the same time don’t complain about what is being done or what money is being spent if you don’t go to the public meetings to be heard. Getting involved is the only way you get the right to complain. Going back to the old parking is not going to happen because of the fact it allows for so many more parking spot in front of the store and this is a good thing. The parking angle can be changed so a person could see out the back window to see if anything is coming rather than having to back out far enough to see out the side window this would also add more room to the center of the road for cars that are meeting each other. The Bump Out are worthless. A bump out is the extension of the sidewalk into the intersection at the crosswalks. This makes for a traffic slowing device and allows for a shorter span in which a person has to walk on the traveled portion of the road. I yet to see anyone park on the east side of the street and walk all the way to the north or south crosswalk to cross the street just to walk all the way back to the center of the block on the west side of the street to get to the store they are going to. So this would mean that very few of the shoppers would even gain anything from the bump outs even being there. The two hour parking should be done in the two main parking lot that were built mostly for this use. Chocking tires to catch offenders is not going to happen. Our officers have more important things to do than mark tires in today’s society. If the store owners have a problem with vehicles sitting for long periods of time they should just call in the plates and let things take its course. When it becomes too much of an in convents for the officers or the store owners things will change. I have said this before: All we need is better angle of parking with a smooth surface in which to park and walk on with good lighting and leave all the other crap for another town to deal with.

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