By Mary Spicer
In the wake of a recent request from members of Meadville City Council for more information on the rental status of the commercial portion of the Kepler development on Market Street, an update on activities of Meadville Redevelopment Authority is on the agenda for council’s first study session of 2013.
The session will begin at 4 p.m. today in the new city hall, 894 Diamond Park.
In the commercial commons, which stretches from the entry to the residential portion of the Kepler development to Center Street, activity is already apparent, with “Confections of a Cake Lover,” a shop at 896 Market St. featuring specialty cakes, cupcakes, cookies and assorted pastries already open for business and a sign in a window at the Center Street end of the building indicating that the units at 886 and 890 Market are being converted into one tenant space for Edinboro University of Pennsylvania.
Other items on the lengthy agenda include introduction of the long-awaited “credit and appeals” policy for the city’s new stormwater management program, which was adopted in November; continued discussion of downtown parking issues initiated by Viki Allin, owner of the Creative Crust bakery on Chestnut Street; continued discussion of a request by Meadville resident Pete Hoke for implementation of a policy on public comment during council sessions; and discussion on the possibility of changing the traffic direction of Center Street between Park Avenue and Diamond Park from one-way to two-way to improve the traffic flow in the immediate vicinity of the new city hall on the corner of Center and Diamond Park.
In late November, Allin, whose store’s back door opens onto Market Square, made a presentation to council requesting that 1) Meadville’s municipal code be amended to specify that the parking spaces immediately surrounding the Market House have a maximum parking time limit of two hours per vehicle per day to eliminate parkers she refers to as “meter feeders”; and that council allow businesses to sponsor 15-minute parking spaces in front of their establishments, enforcing the time limit as is currently done at 15-minute spaces in front of the Market House and PNC Bank with $30 tickets for vehicles “overstaying their welcome.”
Hoke, who appeared before council in December, asked that council consider allowing periods for public comment at both the beginning and end of sessions, allowing immediate feedback from residents in attendance on items discussed during each session.
The change in traffic pattern would eliminate parking along the referenced section of Center while allowing access to city hall from either Park or the Diamond. The change, according to City Manager Joe Chriest, would allow police vehicles to enter and leave the station from either direction. At the present time, all access to the station and its parking lot is from the Diamond and vehicles must exit in the direction of Park.
Mary Spicer can be reached at 724-6370 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Meadville City Council meets today at 4 p.m. in the new City Hall, 894 Diamond Park, for its first study session of 2013. The session will be immediately preceded by the annual reorganization meeting of the City of Meadville Board of Health, which is comprised of all five members of the current city council.