Ask Eugene

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Panoramic view of the City of Eugene at night with City logo.

Have you heard a rumor in the community or just curious about something going on in Eugene? We're here to help! Post your questions and City staff will provide accurate and up-to-date information and answers.

Have you heard a rumor in the community or just curious about something going on in Eugene? We're here to help! Post your questions and City staff will provide accurate and up-to-date information and answers.

Curious about something? Just ask!

Q&A

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    Why doesn’t the city require screening and only give support to local homeless. We cannot afford to re-home and support everyone from outside our community.

    Viccot asked 5 days ago

    Thank you very much for reaching out with your question and concern. While we don’t have data from the current year, previous data collected by Lane County indicates that most people experiencing homelessness in our community are from the area. We know that the need of our local population exceeds the resources that are available, and that the gap between housing affordability and local median wages will continue to create a challenge for our local population in maintaining stable housing, especially in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Therefore, access to affordable housing, shelter, basic needs such as food and hygiene, and other resources to help individuals and families in our community stabilize and thrive is something we will continue to work on. We will also continue to work with Lane County, the state, and other regional partners on how to address the housing and homelessness crisis that is impacting Oregon and the nation.

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    Protesters were driven out of downtown, and into residential areas, because of imposed curfews on the night of the 1st of June 2020. The city code says that this is supposed to happen in response to emergencies. Since the damages from Friday, what is the justification for these emergency declarations that have continued into the week following? Is there a clear limit to how long after an emergency is over that the city is permitted to use it to declare curfews?

    NSerban asked about 1 month ago

    Thank you for you question and for your patience with our reply. In the past few weeks there has been much discussion about the significant events in late May and the City’s response. The City supports and facilitates peaceful protests, and has a responsibility to protect life, safety and property within our community. Read more about why the City implemented curfews on several nights, and how the community was notified. As a City organization we appreciate the concerns and questions we have heard regarding our response. See additional information that may help answer to some of the protest related questions and concerns we’ve heard from the community.

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    Hello in light of riots directly related to black police profiling and recent deaths of George Floyd I would like to know what the policy the city of Eugene has in place to ensure nothing like that ever happens here. It is NOT OK and not supported by this community. Thank you

    Bevin Helm asked about 1 month ago

    Dear Bevin,

    Thank you for reaching out and for your patience with our reply. The events in late May were significant for our community. As a City organization we appreciate the concerns and questions we have heard regarding our response. In Eugene, the work our community has done to promote and establish robust accountability measures provides a strong foundation for future changes. We also recognize we still have work to do and important changes to make as we move forward. The City is open to change, and we want to provide information that may help respond to some of the protest related questions and concerns we’ve heard from the community. You will find information about Eugene Police Department oversight and accountability; the 8 Can’t Wait Campaign; police training in de-escalation, crisis intervention, bias/diversity; police hiring; police use of tear gas and other tools; and more. Additionally, see a statement released today by many Eugene city councilors and Mayor Vinis supporting Black Lives Matter. Please feel free to reach out with any additional questions or concerns.  

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    City Leaders and Elected Officials - For weeks now a group of vagrants has canvassed my neighborhood on recycle pick up day mornings. They are rummaging through the trash, glass and recycle bins placed at curbside for recovery and taking the bottles, cans and other items with deposit return or other resale value. As I departed for work this morning, I approached the individual sorting thru my bins and advised that I did not want him removing any items from the containers. A 2nd vagrant entered the conversation stating that their action was permitted by Law and that they would not comply with my request. Fearing this disagreement could escalate to physical conflict, I left the scene as the group continued to plunder the bins in our neighborhood. Do the City Leaders and Laws in fact enable and permit this behavior? My request to cease the rummaging was defied with aggression and I find the action very concerning on several levels. What can my neighbors and I do to protect our ID Security, our Property and the Personal Safety of our families? Please advise.

    Marshall asked about 2 months ago

    Marshall,

    Thank you for you inquiry. The City does not have a City Code that explicitly prohibits someone from going through garbage and recycling bins. Generally speaking ,the items within one's trash are considered their property until collection by the hauler. We understand that identity theft, infection, injury and many other issues may arise from such behavior and we continue to look at ways to discourage it while finding ways to better address the needs of those who may be inclined to rummage for items.

    If this becomes a recurring issue we suggest contacting the Eugene Police Department’s non-emergency line at 541-682-5111.

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    City Leaders - I submitted a question several weeks ago seeking guidance related to my concern with increasing vagrant activity in my neighborhood as they canvas the area rummaging thru recycle & trash bins removing all items with any resale value. The question which was submitted in detail, centered on the 2 vagrants who aggressively defied my request to not remove the property in my bins as I am concerned about ID Security, my families Personal Safety and protecting my Property. Please advise as to the City's position on what they argued was their legal right to take anything in the disposal bins.

    Marshall asked about 2 months ago

    Thanks for following up, Marshall, and our apologies on a delayed response. Much of our communications team is supporting the City’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. We are working on getting you an answer and you should hear back from us early next week. Thanks for your patience.

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    Why are those who are working on unnecessary new bicycle lanes in Eugene (see 13th ave) not quarantined along with the rest of us? Are we not in a quarantine situation anymore? Why is the city ignoring the mandate for only necessary jobs in operation?

    Val Stilwell asked 3 months ago

    Thanks for reaching out and for your concern about following the Governor’s Stay Home, Save Lives order. The health and safety of our community is the City’s top priority. In accordance with Governor Brown’s rules to slow the spread of COVID-19 in Oregon, the City of Eugene is taking action to reduce potential exposure to this virus, especially for those individuals who are at higher risk of severe illness. These actions include postponing or canceling large community events and activities as well as changing the delivery of some City services and programs. Under the guidance of Lane County Public Health and in consultation with our expert internal emergency response staff, the City is making these difficult decisions in the best interest of public health and welfare. See our website for details about  City services - What’s open? Public Works and other local development projects are allowed under the order. In these situations, our staff is taking important precautions and following the physical distancing guidelines, including keeping 6 feet of distance.

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    to Elected Officials and City/County Management Employee's, My wife and I work hard to stay employed and support our children's needs. Consequently, our family does not receive any financial assistance, free meals, food stamps or other tax payer funded entitlements. We've noticed the City & County leaders are funding many programs and dedicating extensive resources to provide services to those who do not meet their parenting obligations. Most of the services you are extending are paid for thru the crushing property taxes and other tax sources assessed by governments on our productively employed citizens. We haven't heard or seen much of anything about programs elected officials have introduced to support the hard working, tax paying citizens family medical, housing, meal, educational and other well-being. How do you justify this disproportionate distribution of resources? Thank you.

    Marshall asked 3 months ago

    Thank you very much for reaching out. We understand that the entire community is hurting right now and we hear your concerns. We invite you to participate in our upcoming budget process, which provides an opportunity for community members to weigh in on how you feel city resources should be directed. Budget meetings begin on May 13. Visit our Budget web pages as the meeting approaches for details about how to view the remote meetings and provide public comment. You can also visit our Open Budget website to find more details about how resources are allocated in the current budget.

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    I have some ideas to share with LTD transit for input re: their changing routes etc. To whom shall I direct this info? thanks, colette

    eyedance asked 3 months ago

    Thanks for reaching out. Please contact LTD directly to share your ideas about proposed route changes.





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    Wild Iris Ridge is a great addition to the park system. So much so that the parking facility is often full of cars. Yesterday the lot was full and over a dozen cars were parked on Bailey Hill Road.This is an unsafe condition. Are there any plans to build a parking lot that can handle more cars?

    gyutzy asked 3 months ago

    We recognize that there is a parking shortage at Wild Iris Ridge as well as other popular trailheads. We are looking at options for expanding parking, including building additional on-site or purchasing additional land in the area. Unfortunately there are no immediate solutions, so we are asking individuals to be safe and use their best judgement.






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    Hello, my question is why has there never been a drive bridge built from River Road to Goodpasture?

    Heyseester asked 5 months ago

    Thanks for your question!

    When this bridge was under consideration during the late 1990s, it was determined by our elected leaders that the benefits of such a bridge did not outweigh the costs in terms of environmental impact and impacts to parks and natural areas along the river, so they decided to not pursue such a project. There has also been strong neighborhood opposition to a new bridge.

    Thanks again for reaching out. 

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    Are sidewalks ever going to be mandated in areas of Eugene proper where there are no places to walk (Cal Young area for example)?

    Mcswenson asked 6 months ago

    Thank you for your question!

    We agree that it’s important for city streets to have sidewalks on them for people to safely walk. Historically, sidewalks were constructed by developers or homeowners and the city code says that building sidewalks is the property owners responsibility. However, sidewalks can be expensive to construct and it has been many years since the city had an assessment program where we required property owners to pay for sidewalks along their frontage.

    At some point in the foreseeable future, staff would like to bring City Council an update on options for building sidewalks on Eugene streets including the possibility of creating assessment districts where property owners would contribute to the cost of building sidewalks. We would like to explore some creative approaches that will make this less of a burden to property owners than it was in the past.

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    Note to the Mayor and City Leaders: Our citizens are increasingly concerned about the negative impact the homeless epidemic is having on personal safety and engagement in downtown activities. Most recently we've observed a dramatic increase in illegal camping on the NE side of the Willamette River near Skinner Butte. If the city is going to condone this activity, you may as well commercialize the space and sell the property to developers. At least they would be required to clean up their trash, protect the integrity of the river and not intimidate the citizens legally in the space. How much longer will this illegal activity be permitted at the cost of safety and limited park access to productive citizens?

    Marshall asked 6 months ago

    Thank you for your question. We acknowledge the significant impacts that homelessness and illegal camping are having on our community. The City, along with Lane County, its Health & Human Services Department, and numerous community partners, are engaged in a variety of efforts to address the homelessness crisis.

    In regards to this specific example, we believe you are referring to the north bank path of the Ruth Bascom Riverbank Path System that runs between Ferry Street Bridge and I105 Bridge on the north bank of the river. While the surrounding park system is owned and managed by the City of Eugene, this stretch is owned and managed by the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT). ODOT has land management rules and practices that are different than the City of Eugene’s. The City has approached ODOT about possibly allowing the City of Eugene to manage this land but there is no update on that process at this time. We anticipate more information this spring/summer. ODOT’s contact number 541-744-8080.

    More broadly, as you can imagine, homelessness is a very complex and challenging issue for our community and many others. Addressing homelessness includes addressing factors such as affordable housing, income, health, education, employment, and other needs. The City is working with a variety of sectors and groups on long-term solutions. Meanwhile, we are also working on short-term solutions including alternative shelter programs such as Rest Stops, Dusk to Dawn, and the Overnight Parking Program, and current work on a day resource center and low-barrier public shelter. We are also working hard with Lane County on implementing the recommendations outlined in the Lane County Shelter Feasibility Study.

    Additionally, the City is leading the Community Safety Initiative to provide added resources for police, municipal court, fire & EMS, prevention services, and homelessness services. Through this initiative, the City is working to provide faster, more efficient safety responses, deter crime, connect people with services, engage and help at-risk youth, support more investigations and court services, and add jail beds.

    Read more about all of this work on our homelessness web pages and learn how to report illegal camping in public right-of-ways, parks and other publicly-owned property.

    We know that there is no single or simple solution for homelessness, and our approaches must be creative and multi-faceted. We engage the community to be involved in those and have been working with business owners, non-profits, people with lived experience, public agencies, and many others. We ultimately want our community to be as healthy and safe as possible, our businesses to be supported and thriving, and for everyone in our community to have a safe and adequate place to live.

    Thank you again for communicating your concerns. Your input  is appreciated.

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    I love the protected bike way on East Amazon street (and the improved bridges and mulch trails, too). I would like to know officially if it is intended solely for bicyclists? Or is it “shared use?” I haven’t been able to find this information so please let me know any rules regarding use of the protected bike lanes. Thank you!!

    MO asked 6 months ago

    The bikeway on East Amazon Drive from Hilyard Street to Dillard Road is a bike lane. In Oregon, bike lanes are “designated by official signs or markings for use by persons riding bicycles…”. While the purpose of the bikeway is for people riding bicycles, we are aware that people are also walking, running in the bike lane. The width of the bikeway is 12 feet, which is the same as our shared use path standard. Installation of a shared use path was explored before the bikeway was installed but it was determined that it could not be constructed within the parklands due to environmental factors. So, we have a situation where people are using the bikeway as a shared use path, even though the official purpose of the bikeway is for bicycles. We are monitoring the facility to determine if additional signs or markings should be added.

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    Hello, My partner and I we're considering a homeless Outreach on Christmas day 2019 - perhaps giving out blankets and personal hygiene items and other things if available. Do you know of anyone that's doing this on Christmas Day? If not, do you know of any organizations that we could contact that might be able to help provide us with some items ? Thank you, Chelsea

    ChelseaOrGirl asked 7 months ago

    Hi Chelsea,

    Thanks for contacting the City, and for your interest in assisting people who are experiencing homelessness in our community during this holiday season. 

    There are a number of community organizations who provide services and needed items to the unhoused in our area. I do not know what types of activities any of these organizations may be planning for Christmas Day, but some that you could try contacting to see how you may be able to contribute to their efforts are:

    St. Vincent de Paul - https://www.svdp.us/
    White Bird - https://whitebirdclinic.org/
    Eugene Mission - https://eugenemission.org/
    Food for Lane County - https://foodforlanecounty.org/
    Catholic Community Services - https://www.ccslc.org/
    ShelterCare and/or Looking Glass (which serves youth) - https://www.sheltercare.org/   https://www.lookingglass.us/

    I hope this is helpful and thanks again for thinking of those who are homeless this Christmas season.

    - Caitlin 

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    Hi. City code requires parking lots to have trees, landscaping, etc. But the new parking lot on the old city hall site has none of that. Please tell me why? Thanks.

    Eugeneme asked 7 months ago

    Thanks for your question, Lane County purchased the former City of Eugene property for purposes of constructing a new county justice center. The County is working through the financing and development plans. During this time period, Lane County installed a temporary parking lot. The parking product installed is a roll out carpet like material that is designed for temporary use and is allowed under Eugene City Code 9.5800. The parking facility is not required to meet development standards because it is temporary. Thank you for contacting the City of Eugene.


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    Is your Owen Rose Garden webcam out of action? I cannot seem to access it any more. Ever since I visited your lovely city last year I like to view the Rose Gardens via your webcam.

    Margaret Connor asked 7 months ago

    We’re glad you enjoyed your visit to Eugene so much that you continue to sneak a peak via our webcam. We are sad to report it isn’t operating right now. We hope to bring it back in the future, but in the meantime follow Eugene Parks and Open Space on Instagram for other glimpses at Eugene’s beauty.

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    Hi, Please tell me when will the Willamette Street project with the new bike lanes/sidewalks start and end construction? Thanks

    Eugeneme asked 8 months ago

    Hi, Eugeneme.

    We anticipate starting work on S. Willamette in early 2020, but don't have a more definitive timeline as of now. Because of the amount of work we're going to be doing in this corridor, it will be a lengthy project - about 10 months in all. We're hoping to do all of the work inside calendar year 2020.

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    i was greatly concerned at the 10/16 Transportation System "gap"work session, that city staff reported "We have no benchmarks to know if we are making progress." Are we on a "carbon diet" with no measurable actions being set or achieved? How will we reach our Climate Recovery Ordinance goals? Isn't an ordinance a law? I Appreciate your response! Debby Climate Emergency Activist

    dmcgee asked 9 months ago

    Good to hear from you, Deb. The Climate Recovery Ordinance, or the CRO, is in City Code. It sets out targets and benchmarks for fossil fuel use reductions and greenhouse gas emission reductions.  

    The City has been measuring it’s greenhouse gas emissions for some time. Please check out the City’s Community Greenhouse Gas Inventory and the City’s Internal Greenhouse Gas Inventory for that information. 

    The conversation at the work session was about adding more detail for certain projects or programs. As we move into implementation of the Climate Action Plan 2.0, we will work on adding more measures to align with actions in that plan.


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    The question keeps coming up about ebikes on bike paths. Are they legal or not? Are there constraints? I think ebikes are going to keep growing fast. Maybe the right thing to do is make them legal, but restrict speed on the bike paths. I often see bike riders exceeding safe limits around the river. Thanks

    Steve Gibson asked 9 months ago

    Thanks for reaching out Steve. E-bikes (electric-assist bikes) are allowed on our shared use paths. However, there are a couple of caveats:

    • They have to have pedals to meet the definition of an electric-assist bike.
    • They are not allowed to operate using electric power in the Whilamut Natural Area which is roughly the area east of Leisure Lane (the small street that connects to Nearby Nature from the riverfront path that’s a bit west of the Frohnmayer Bridge/Autzen path).

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    Drivers frequently speed and make unsafe turns (including U-turns) at the intersection of W 27th Ave and Charnelton Street. I've witnessed several near-accidents form my living room window. A small traffic circle/roundabout (like the one at W 15th Ave and Charnelton) could help calm and direct traffic. What is the process is to formally request adding a roundabout at that intersection?

    Auburnuo asked 9 months ago

    At this time we do not have a formal process to request  roundabouts. We do have information about traffic calming on our website.

    At the specified location there is not really enough room for a traditional single-lane roundabout. There is the slight possibility of a mini-roundabout, but (as with all roundabouts) there would have to be some extensive design done before staff could decide if it would ultimately work in this location. That being said, the City is currently working on our roundabout design guidance, which will help clarify locations that roundabouts should be considered.

    This particular location does have some speed issues and 27th has been on several lists for improvements. However at this time the City of Eugene is focusing on its Vision Zero goals, meaning that we are spending our resources on addressing the most serious high crash areas in our city. Although 27th does have some speeding issues, there are many other locations that need addressing immediately.

    Thanks for reaching out to the City!

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    What is going on with the lot downtown you just spent wasted money on making a parking? Does it mean that it will be a parking lot for years or is there a definite plan on building. What is the total development expenditure so far in the in the rebuilding on that lot, architect, development, city employment time, and city and private attorney fees?

    Bob asked 10 months ago

    Thank you for your question!

    Last year, Lane County purchased the former City Hall lot from the City of Eugene for a new Courthouse and center for justice. This is no longer a City of Eugene project.

    Learn More

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    what is that building that has been built on Bertelsen Rd.? it has been bugging us to know what it is. it is just past West 1st Ave on the left if you are going towards West 11th. it looks like it could be a convenience store or something like that.

    Daphne Loose asked 10 months ago

    Thanks so much for your question. While we’re not exactly sure which building you are referring to based on your description, we think it could be a small Comcast office building which is under construction in that area. The address of that building is 151 S. Bertelsen Road. Since we aren’t certain which building you are wondering about we’d like to provide you with some tools and resources to help you look it up on your own and/or for your future use.

    • eBuild – Our online building permit tracking application
      This can give you information about what is happening in regards to construction or upcoming construction at particular sites. Type an address to see the permit history.
    • EUGmaps – A new interactive web-based tool
      This mapping tool allows the public to access and search a variety of publicly-available local data including properties/taxlots in our community and learn information about who owns the property, the different zoning etc. See a tutorial on how to use the online tool.
    • Eugene Mapping Hub
      Also check out our new website that includes all kinds of publicly-available City of Eugene maps.
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    Has there been any convesation about the safety concerns at the Patterson and Hilyard merger on 23rd street? I've lived on 23rd between Patterson and Hilyard for about a year and a half and I've witnessed 5 separate accidents where cars hit and jump the curb when rounding the bank. Some have come dangerously close to entering into the backyards that exist there. Is there any discussion around creating a safer curve?

    Am87 asked 5 months ago

    Thanks for the question and apologies in the lengthy delay in answering.

    Our Traffic Operations team has evaluated this section of 23rd Avenue. You’re correct in that if we were designing the road today, it would look different than how it does now. While we have some ideas on how to improve safety in that section of road, we currently don’t have a paving project scheduled there anytime soon to implement the ideas and changes.

    Our City Council adopted Vision Zero in 2015 – a data driven approach at improving safety on our transportation network. We analyze crash data to identify the most dangerous areas of the city and then prioritize safety solutions for those areas. This section of 23rd Avenue is not on our prioritized list.

    Thanks again for reaching out.