Highways, A Race & Miscellaneous Approvals
by Kirby LindsayThe Fremont Chamber of Commerce (FCC) does a lot of great work. At Board meetings, held on the last Wednesday of each month at 8 a.m. at History House, attendees will hear the latest on a wide variety of interesting projects. For March, these included the Walking Guide, Art Walk, Parking, Retail and the Health & Wellness groups, plus the 2010 membership contest. Occasionally, the meeting also contains reports, and interesting actions, by those not within the Chamber.
Check Your Speed
Patty Michaud, of the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT), presented the Smarter Highways (or Active Traffic Management) program. Using electronic signs, WSDOT aims for more effective management of traffic through chronically congested freeway areas. This summer expect these sign bridges with directing drivers along northbound I-5 and SR-520. Signs will be installed on I-90 by spring of 2011.
The signs hang over roadway lanes to provide announcements on lane closures, congestion, merges and variable speed limits. When asked, Michaud acknowledged that patrol officers will enforce reduced speeds when posted. More information, and a video seen by the FCC Board, can be accessed at www.smarterhighways.com. Comments and questions on the program can be directed to Michaud by e-mail or at 206/716-1133.
The Chamber Board also heard a presentation by Terry Buchanan and Zac Daab of Low Pressure Promotions (Daab also operates Cascade Bicycle Studios in Fremont). They want to stage a bike race in Fremont, in concert with three other local races held over a single weekend. These are the Ballard Criterion, on June 5, the weekly race at Seward Park (greatly enhanced) on June 3, and the annual U-District Boat Street Race, now on June 6.
The Fremont race would speed around a single block on the evening of Friday, June 4, and bring roughly 1,000 spectators, plus racers from around the world. To happen, nearby business and property owners must grant permission, along with the City of Seattle Special Events Committee. A few Board members voiced concerns about whether those permissions could be obtained.
Proceed With Caution
The Board took no formal action on these guest reports, but they did vote to officially approve a contract for Bold Hat Productions to produce the Fremont Street Fair for 2010. The contract could be considered overdue since Phil Megenhardt, and his office of efficient event genies, have been working tirelessly, since January, to make the Fair happen.
During his report, Megenhardt mentioned registrations for vendors and sponsors have progressed as expected. They’d like to see more small sponsors - local businesses can support specific aspects of the Fair with small donations. Jessica Vets, the Chamber Executive Director, pointed out that one plan - to ask Fair visitors to donate money to Solid Ground through text messages - won’t happen this year. The initial set-up fees were found to be too costly for this year.
Other fundraising methods will be considered, but Board members – and all supporters of the amazing work of Solid Ground - were urged to attend their fundraising luncheon on May 21. The Board would like to fill half a dozen tables.
The Board also voted to approve a letter to the Seattle Department of Planning & Development that asks for approval of permits for the remodel of Fire Station #9. The letter indicates remodel plans already in place have considered neighborhood interests. Also, the letter supports the current location of Station #9, on Linden Avenue near B.F. Day School, considered optimal for response time requirements.
For further information on these matters, or the many other items discussed at FCC Board meetings, consider attending one soon. All are open to the public and everyone is welcome!
- A Tour of Tours
- by Kirby Lindsay, September 2006 for Fremont.com
- FNC Highlight Reel: Communication, Complaint & Preservation
- by Kirby Lindsay, January 29, 2010
©2010 Kirby Lindsay. This column is protected by intellectual property laws, including U.S. copyright laws. Reproduction, adaptation or distribution without permission is prohibited.