Some Hope for Changes in Hotel Proposal; Housing Issues; 126 Fatality; 4th of July

Some Hope for Changes in Hotel Proposal

The City of Florence is moving forward with the sale of the Quince street property across from the Florence Events Center, but it must first get official approval from the Florence City Council.  During June’s meeting of the Florence Urban Renewal Agency, at which parameters were set for the project, some individuals were not on board with the plans for a Wyndham Microtel hotel.  Speaking as a private citizen FURA Board Member Graham Ross said the initial plan was for a hotel conference center hybrid, something which was tabled due to profitability concerns.

“The Hotel lacks a lot of the amenities for small conferences, business conferences and major events.”

He said that down the road some of that could be made up by other businesses or perhaps additions to the FEC property.

“and the thought is that, ok, let’s see what exactly is needed once the hotel is built and we’ll pick up the amenities in another part”

Ross was the only dissenting vote on the project, but says he is keeping an open mind that some allowances can be made to the proposal.  Ross joins Kay King for a conversation on the project on this month’s Our Town.

Housing Issues

Housing continues to be an issue for Florence.  In 2017 there was a housing needs analysis produced for the city which indicated that there was a need for 141 residences in order to meet the needs of the community.  According to Wendy Farley-Campbell with the city in today’s Florence the need is much greater.

“Even with the housing that has been produced in the last 5 years since that study was done the housing need today is over 300 pent up.  So its grown, its doubled.”

In addition to the lack of housing there has been a huge price increase to single family homes with averages above the 300,000 mark.  In addition Farley Campbell says they get several inquiries a month from interested parties outside of the state regarding short term rentals and vacation homes which further deplete the area’s inventory.  The city is looking at the effect of short term rentals.  Wendy Farley-Campbell is a guest on this month’s our town to discuss this issue.

126 Fatality

A crash over the weekend involving a pedestrian and two motor vehicles on highway 126  stopped traffic for several hours.  An unnamed male pedestrian was struck by two different vehicles while trying to cross the highway at milepost 47.  The vehicles, a  Honda Fit driven by David Parrish of Walton and a Ford f150 driven by Jessie Lomelli of Eugene were turning left from territorial highway onto 126 when the man was struck and killed.  Preliminary investigations show the pedestrian was crossing against the crosswalk lights.

4th of July

It was a day filled with celebration in Florence yesterday and culminated in a 20 minute fireworks show from the port of Siuslaw.  Many onlookers were expecting a show over the water, however the barge that had been used in previous years had been sold but the spectacular could still be seen against a clouded backdrop.  The outpouring of vehicles after the event was directed by members of the Florence Police Department and West Lane Fire and EMS.