The City Council Agenda for Monday, June 4th 2007

Yes - I'm reading it again. Someone has to go into geek-mode to keep you all informed.

So what I'm seeing so far is this: An update on the Mayor's Monument (aka The Curse of Roanoke) in Elmwood Park, as it is slated for revitalization this year. An update on the Amphitheater Study, which is nearly a moot point as the Lake will have it's own comparable up and running long before we do.

Unless the city really hangs itself on the line, and pushes for something more than what we have heard about before - it will be just another amphitheater - similar to the one at the lake. Woo.

Then there will be a quick update on the Aviation Drive - Thirlane Rd. project.

All of this at the 9am meeting.

At the 2pm meeting - well, not much really. Which makes it a great time for anyone with the time and availability to go before the City Council, and respectfully request they remove their collective head from that dark, stinky nether-region it seems to have embedded itself in.

Otherwise, not much to report - which is nothing uncommon with the Council.

Remember folks - the elections are coming up soon enough. Or not soon enough - depending on how you view things.

Oh - I need to revise my numbers from the parking issue the other day - Collectively taken, all the city parking garages on weekends contain less than 1000 cars overall. Taken to the 1k level, at 2 bucks a car - thats $2,000 a weekend. $2,000 a weekend to pay for a 7.2 million dollar parking garage being built for those buying into the Condo/apartments being build at places like the Campbell Garage Lofts, The Peerless Candy Co., and similar ventures down that end of town.

And if you think I'm kidding about that - check this from our City CEO.. uh.. Manager: "Roanoke City Manager Darlene Burcham said she has warned council members for three years that the rate increase would be needed to pay for a parking garage between Campbell and Salem avenues. The garage is needed to serve new living spaces under construction downtown, she said.

That influx of full-time residents, Burcham said, "is key to the long-term success of downtown."

Oh I could say soooo much more, but I will hold my tongue for the moment.

The lawn is calling me.. I must mow.


Hum Drum

With the rolling thunder in the distance, and an old favorite song playing in the background.. I want to write.

But not my usual output.. something more.

Exactly what, I'm not sure. But something will come of this. I have 48 hours of dead air to fill.

Maybe... a stroll to the edge of the world is in order. Maybe.


After much delay and consternation

Sorry for all the delays folks - but life does not stop here at F-R HQ, high on a hill overlooking the city (you know that ferris wheel at the civic center? I saw what you did there) and preparing for the launch of.. well, you'll find out.

Memorial Day has always been a day of remembrance for me, which despite the best efforts of those here in OhNoesaNoke, I was able to push aside all the silly news... until now.

So I open this with this warning: What follows is a weekends worth of held-back commentary, and it might get ugly.

Note to John Lugar, President of Valley Forward:

You have shown the world exactly how petty and childish you and your group really are. By your clear and delusional misunderstanding of the basic facts before you - your bitter statements regarding the people of the city (not that you actually hold them in any regard) and the MMAC show that you are not fit to lead. You, and your group, should be commended for the Gallop for the Greenways. But as for the rest of it, seriously - be still, and listen for a change. I know you folks are used to a certain level of treatment, but you are out in the world now - and things are different out here.

Your "broad public support" is easily dismissed, and you know that. A biased and misleading survey does not prove anything, except to you folks.

Learn from this, for your next public works project and stop assigning blame to everyone under the sun for your own bad idea.

Note to the Roanoke City Council:

There is not much more I can add to the public outcry on the $2 parking fee. It's a bad idea, and I have a feeling you folks know it - but decided to go the easy route and keep the idea.

If, and this is only an if, you get maybe 200 cars on a Saturday at the Market Garage, and another 100 (not seen that many, but what have you) on Sunday - thats $600 in fees collected.

I do understand the need for a new parking garage towards the west side of Downtown. If any area is ripe for growth, it's that area. What needs to be done, rather than raising the fee across the board, is raise it for those who are not city residents - and build into the decal fee a parking tax, and issue a small barcode sticker for city residents. They can then park free when they need it, while still generating revenue for the city to put towards the building of the new garage (and perhaps fixing up the old ones).

That's not the entire story, but it's enough of the story for now. There will be more later - thats for sure.


Difficult, in a word.

It's hard not to respond to a certain article in today's newspaper. But I will refrain until Tuesday, when Memorial Day is officially over.

Please, if you have not done so yet - watch the video below. And remember...