By Kiera Morgan
The Lincoln County Board of Commissioners met in a joint session with the Waldport City council last week. One of the items discussed was the increase in usage of Range Drive by pedestrians. Waldport Mayor Susan Woodruff said now that the schools are all located off Range Drive there is concern of students walking beside the road and they would like the county to work with them to put in sidewalks. City Manager Kerry Kemp explained the cities concerns.
He said “we are considering using some urban renewal funds to increase signage, but we would like to see some sidewalks or shoulder improvements put in. We would like to work with the county on that.” Part of the property at Range and Crestline is owned by the city and part of it is owned by the county. Roy Kinyon county public works director told the council an improvement project would likely cost between $250,000 and $300,000. It was also brought up that Samaritan will be building their new medical clinic up on Range drive and this too will increase traffic.
Kinyon said the county can’t do it alone but they are willing to explore options. Commissioner Hunt suggested looking for some state grants to help with the improvement project. He added that the state transportation improvement plan is another avenue that could be explored. ODOT often has grants for pedestrian and bicycle improvements.
The council also asked about increasing bus service up Range drive to accommodate the new medical clinic. That is something that the county will also be looking into. The council was told by a county transportation representative that right now it is not safe for the buses to go up Range Drive because the road is too narrow. Another good reason it was pointed out for the shoulder and sidewalk improvements.