Things to pay attention to in the next Reno City Council meeting.
Onsite Digital Displays
1. On-Premise Digital Display - It looks like the city council will adopt ordinances for on-site digital displays. This includes locations and types, restrictions along the Truckee River, and more.
ReTRAC Cover Ideas
2. Presentation on Most Popular ReTRAC Plan to Council, and possible action moving forward involving the Nevada Museum of Art. Recently, there is a resurgence of interest, as described in the Staff Report, in the covers once again, both by the surrounding properties (Montage, Whitney Peak, Eldorado). Public input was gathered at a DICE event at the Nevada Museum of Art, a special Redevelopment Agency Advisory Board meeting was held, the Regional Alliance for Downtown talked about it, and local properties got involved, and amazingly, all came to a consensus on what to do with the ReTRAC covers. If you aren't familiar or are new to the city, the ReTRAC covers are the train trench covers spanning the area between Virginia Street and West Street. Sierra Street cuts through the middle of the two covers. The consensus is, it would best serve downtown to resemble the La Rambla Plaza in Barcelona, Spain. See pic below:
Areas of Consensus:
1. Plant trees along the north and south sides of the cover, and plant grass, shrubs and planters where applicable.
2. Install twinkle lights on the trees.
3. Add lighting along the trench for night activities, while minimizing impact on residents neighboring the trench covers.
4. Create permanent infrastructure for shade.
5. Include art elements, especially sculptures.
6. Consider historic elements.
7. Create a dog park on the west cover
8. Explore use of distinctive pavement treatments
9. Explore use of parklets for temporary seating.
10. Create opportunities for retail
11. Explore feasibility of abandoning Commercial Row between Arlington and Sierra
After presenting to the council, the next step is to have a charette at the Nevada Museum of Art and come back to the council with a final plan. The process is primarily being funded by a private party. There are several grants that provide significant community support when it comes to projects such as this, particularly when it involves art.
Lost City Farm
The City Council may approve some staff time to explore city-owned parcels and see if any are a fit for Lost City Farms, which is losing its Midtown home on Center Street and Moran, due to increased interest in developing the large lot.
Motels on the Agenda
You might remember my report on this RAAB Meeting, where standards for downtown motels were discussed, which morphed into a much larger, deeper discussion about some of the core issues surrounding extended-stay housing in basic motel rooms retrofitted with a refrigerator.
Two items on the city council agenda should be interesting extensions of that discussion. One, brought forth my councilwoman Jardon, and discussed in that RAAB meeting, would be exploring the potential of retrofitting downtown rentals with kitchenettes to provide quality low income housing, and the other relates to reviewing the lodger's tax, taking into consideration motel occupancy, blight conditions, etc.
Also on the agenda is to have city staff identify possible bus stop locations for public restrooms.
Staff Reports - Warning - it's 536 pages.