City Council Meeting - Work Session Minutes
Mayor Drotzmann called the work session meeting to order at 6:00 pm. Present were Councilors Myers, Primmer, Hardin, Beas-Fitzgerald, Gutierrez, Davis and Smith. Staff members in attendance were City Manager Byron Smith, City Attorney Gary Luisi, Assistant City Manager Mark Morgan, City Planner Clinton Spencer, Chief Edmiston, Kelly Parsons, Bill Schmittle, Ron Sivey, Roy Bicknell, Emma Porricolo, Heather LaBeau, Judge Creasing, and Lilly Alarcon-Strong. News media present was Michael Kane of NE Oregon Now.
Festival Street Kickoff Event
City Planner Clint Spencer stated the Festival Street Open House is work that was started in 2008 with downtown merchants trying to come up with a way to revitalize the area and meet the needs that were identified. This concept was then rolled into the Urban Renewal Plan. During the community needs assessment last year, it was determined that downtown revitalization was also a community priority and now was the best time to start working on this project. Mr. Spencer introduced Mike Faha and Shawn Kummer with Greenworks that has been hired to design the Festival Street.
Mr. Spencer stated the Festival Street Kickoff Event Open House is open to the public and has been advertised on KOHU, thru the Chamber, and with Emma Porricolo hand delivering personal invitations to Main Street businesses.
At 6:02 pm Mayor Drotzmann recessed the meeting so the council, staff, and audience could attend the Festival Street Kickoff Event Open House directly outside of City Hall.
At 6:48 pm Mayor Drotzmann reconvened the meeting, and asked that Mr. Spencer give more information regarding the Festival Street process.
Mr. Spencer stated there is a five member Committee that will meet for about 9 to 10 months to help design the Festival Street. A full concept should be ready by March with bid documents going out by next summer. All meetings will be publicized and open to the public. Council updates will also be given.
The Committee consists of the following members: Briana Cortaberria, Dave Floria, Jacob Neighbors, Council Representative Jackie Myers, and City Representatives Clint Spencer and Mark Morgan. There is currently one opening for a citizen member.
Councilor Davis asked how the Festival Street Design will be funded.
City Manager Smith stated the Urban Renewal Plan has a dollar amount estimated for this project and that is one of the numbers that has been used.
Councilor Myers asked if there was going to be curbing on the Festival Street.
Mr. Faha and Mr. Kummer stated that it hasn’t been decided but there could not be curbing but separation defined in many different ways by using, trees, signs, columns, etc.
The council agreed it was a nice presentation and Mayor Drotzmann encouraged the audience to fill out a survey if they had not yet done so.
Councilor Smith asked if this Committee will work with the Pubic Art Committee, so these projects can be cohesive.
Mayor Drotzmann stated yes.
(6:55 pm John Kirwan arrived)
City Manager Smith stated he also felt the Open House had a great turn out and is looking forward to see how this will improve downtown.
Mayor Drotzmann thanked Mr. Faha and Mr. Kummer for working with the City on this concept and asked if they would be working on all three concepts of the Festival Street Design or one at a time.
Mr. Faha and Mr. Kummer stated they will be working on all three.
City Manager Smith stated the City also has funding that ODOT has committed to this area.
Mayor Drotzmann stated he loves the idea, community involvement and engagement, and believes this will be a nice addition to Hermiston.
Mayor Drotzmann ended the work session at 6:56pm. The Councilors took a short break before the regular City Council meeting convened at 7:00 pm.