Loveland City School District assistant superintendent of human resources
There is a quote attributed to Confucius that states, “Find a job you love and you will never work a day in your life.” While the soundness of that as career advice is debatable, what is not up for argument is that if one feels challenged, valued, and supported in their work they can flourish. It is our goal that Loveland is exactly that type of workplace.
When I arrived in Loveland a year ago that sense of a greater purpose was almost palpable. Almost everyone I encountered told me how much they liked working here and I wanted to capture that passion. We created a video series entitled “Why I Love Loveland” that highlighted some employees talking about what attracted them to Loveland and how they make a difference every day. They spoke in no uncertain terms about this being a great place to work, a wonderful community to support, and fantastic kids to teach. We linked these videos to the Human Resources page on the district website – if our goal is to attract, retain and support the best people possible, who better to explain what makes this such a great place to be.
We have just kicked off the 2014-15 “Why I Love Loveland” video series and I encourage you to take a minute and peruse the stories captured on the HR website (http://www.lovelandschools.org/HumanResources.aspx). You will be struck, like I was, by the infectious enthusiasm of our teachers, aides, bus drivers, custodians, and food service workers. You will be proud of the sincerity with which they approach their work. You will understand why they Love Loveland.
The Loveland Initiative is proud once again to host the 17th Annual Christmas Toy Store. Christmas is a wonderful time of year, and should not be missed by any child. With our annual Toy Store, we make it a wonderful experience for low-income parents and their children.
The Toy Store was created to help families who could not afford to spend much on toys and gifts. Purchasing toys and gifts at a discount helps parents feel that they are contributing to their child’s Christmas while enabling the parents to choose items based on their child’s interests and needs.
We are committed to using the money raised by the Toy Store for the betterment of children and families in Loveland. The past 15 years, the money raised has been used for the Tracy L Johnson Scholarship Fund which assists a student to further his or her education, and other programming needs. We are very proud that sixteen college scholarships have been awarded. Last year we awarded a $1500 and a $2500 scholarship to two Loveland students! We feel that one of the ways to empower people is through education and this is the way to break the cycle of poverty. Without you, we cannot offer help to these children.
More than 250 children from under-served families in the Loveland area receive gifts via our Toy Store. Each family will sign up, pre-register and financially qualify. They are then offered the opportunity to shop for 5-8 gifts per child in their family, based on the number of donations received.
Parents and grandparents come into a store setting (set up by volunteers) with tables marked by price to purchase items for $0.50 to $5 per gift.
The 17th Annual Christmas Toy Store will be held at the Loveland Moose Lodge, 227 E. Loveland Ave. The date for the event is December 19.
We will be accepting donations of NEW UNWRAPPED toys and gifts for children, preteens and teens. (See attached suggested gift list). Gift cards and monetary donations are also greatly appreciated.
Please drop off donations at Bond Furniture 113 Karl Brown Way November 1, through December 15. You may also drop off items at any of the Loveland School District buildings during school hours. We can also make arrangements to pick up gifts.
In addition to gifts, we always need volunteers for pick-up, wrapping, displays and transportation.
We are confident that our community will once again pull together to help the children and the families in Loveland. Please feel free to call Project Leaders Mary Hensley at 513-697-6694 or e-mail Shionee Blust e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or myself at 513-633-0233 email@example.com with any questions or concerns.
Sidewalks have barriers throughout Loveland, parking can be a nightmare and to add to the conversation most of the restaurants in downtown loveland are not wheelchair friendly.
The Works has tried by building a small ramp onto their patio, but it's somewhat dangerous due to the narrowness in size. The other entry is around the back and it's also a tight squeeze for a 350 lb power wheelchair, but I applaud Scott the owner for trying to accommodate. He is a great guy!
Tanos and Paxtons (owners are also amazing people) however, they are not accessible including, the tables on the patio. The tables prevent my son from sitting close to the table so most of his food ends up on his lap!
Loveland Sweets and Pizazz have no access and honestly the bench/tables on the sidewalk don't help with access and maneuvering. It looks charming though!
I should add....the reason for the lack of access to the buildings/restaurants in DT Loveland is because they are considered historic buildings. So they don't have to make access, but I wish they would!
Honestly, we avoid going out because we get so frustrated with access. Events are a nightmare and we avoid them completely except for homecoming parade which was a blast for my son. The only problem was he was stuck on the street versus the sidewalk. Vehicles in the parade were just a foot away from him. Finally a man screamed at the crowd to move so that my son and I didn't get killed! It scared me to death.
Football games are another issue for us. My son can't access his friends who sit in the stands and viewing the game can be difficult, but the Loveland Police officer who watches over the games is a compassionate man. He has allowed my son to sit on the track to see the game better. But it just further separates my son from his friends so it's not always a solution.
I know Loveland cares and we couldn't have picked a better community to live in, but we can do so much better and we have a great opportunity to do so with the new Loveland Station.
Loveland schools, businesses, and city officials: you can do better. Educate, communicate, and enforce. Tools are available for educating the public about the need and use of these special (van accommodating) parking spots, and some great ideas have been presented here (Accessible parking; out of sight, out of mind, neglected and abused).
Fellow Loveland residents and visitors: WE can do better.
I'm probably preaching to the choir, but just in case a few scofflaws are still reading: imagine pulling into Nisbet Park and immediately seeing two vans pull into the spots on either side, within inches of your vehicle, making you a virtual prisoner as their drivers headed off for a multi-hour bike ride/shopping/dining/concert/show/visit with friends/soccer game/etc. OR - think about how mad you are when the ONE spot left in a lot or garage is partially filled by sloppy parking jobs on one or both sides, rendering it tantalizingly useless for anyone but a motorcyclist. Isn't that infuriating??? How about when that really tall guy sits RIGHT IN FRONT OF YOU in a nearly empty movie theater?
This is absolutely a black and white issue of clear legal rights, and I fully support engaging our law enforcement officers 110%, especially in flagrant violations (clear signage/pavement marking, vehicle lacking accessible parking placard/plates).
But wouldn't we all rather live in a community where we show respect and understanding for folks like Timmy and their families because it is the right thing to do and we are compassionate and caring, not because we are afraid of getting a ticket? Wouldn't it be better if police officers never had any opportunity to issue tickets for these violations?
I generally feel that it is not for any of us to judge whether that person with the accessible placard hanging on the rear-view window at Kroger or the mall is "really" a person with a disability; but in cases like the example given here it is hard to maintain that non-judgmental stance. People like the two women bikers/shoppers who abuse the privilege of the accessibility placard (even if they had the legal right to use it, they obviously didn't need to) should be ashamed of themselves, because their actions undermine the credibility of others' legitimate medical and physical needs and limitations. It also shares an unspoken message: "I don't care about you."
Just as our children in the Loveland schools are taught not to bully - and to stand up to bullying when they see it happening to others - we adults should respect designated accessible parking and other access spaces/areas and advocate for those whose rights and needs are violated. We need to take personal responsibility for one another, including challenging those we see violating accessibility laws or even exercising thoughtlessness (like the people blocking Timmy's view at the football game).
Whether active or passive, tolerating and permitting this type of thoughtless disregard for others makes it seem OK, which reduces ALL of us.
(The author of this column wishes to remain anonymous.)
ADA was passed in 1990 and no city has an excuse to be out of compliance. Able-bodied people are unaware of the tremendous hardship they cause people who are wheelchair users when they usurp their parking spaces, and cities who do not maintain them are overtly ignoring the needs of part of society.
Many wheelchair users will freely tell you they are not disabled themselves - it is society that disables them by doing things like stacking boxes or planting pots on sidewalks that are the accessible entrances to buildings, bathrooms etc.
You may have noticed that the Loveland Starbucks is one that has not yet installed the accessible serving counter where drinks can be picked up when ready. Have you ever gone to a restaurant that has adopted the high cafe style tables? If you are with a friend who is a wheelchair user, forget eating there.
I am available to support the Clawsons in whatever way they need!
Molly Kelly-Elliott is a resident of Loveland, Ohio
I moved to the City of Loveland in 1994. My two adult boys attended Loveland City Schools. Loveland is a wonderful place to live. For several years I have had the pleasure of volunteering and serving this community. I am the Executive Director of The Loveland Initiative.
Why we are worthy of the Community Block Grant Funding.
The Loveland Initiative meets the needs of under-served children and their families.
For 17 years The Loveland Initiative successfully provided eight programs that serve as the provider of resources for under-served families.
The Operating Board of The Loveland Initiative is committed to fulfilling the nonprofit’s mission. The group understands the mission, identifies with it, articulate it and defends it with passion. They are professional, knowledgeable and loyal to the organization.
In the City of Loveland, public transportation is not available to residents. This limits their ability to access services in the City of Cincinnati. Often, many residents are without cars.
The Loveland City Council has received several recipients responses by public hearings, comments submitted to Clerk of Council and Loveland Magazine concerning the Loveland Initiative’s work. Recipients have spoken eloquently of the need to grant funding for The Loveland Initiative. They see the long term good that comes from the organization success in and for the community. We hope you see the same.
In conclusion, we urge you; the Loveland City Council to vote in support of receiving funding for the Loveland Initiative as we seek to support a program designed to service under-served children and their families.
Terri Rogers Loveland Initiative, Executive Director
This note was sent to City Hall by Melanie Church:
Dear City Council Members:
I am a 33 year old female business professional from Toledo, OH. I moved to Cincinnati in 2006 to further my career in the insurance industry. My educational background consists of a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Finance, Magna Cum Laude, an Associate of Arts Degree in Business Administration, Cum Laude, an Associate of Science Degree in Criminal Justice Technology, numerous insurance designations (FLMI, ALMI, ACS, AFSI, ARA, NASD Series 6), Ohio Department of Insurance Licensures as an Agent and Adjuster and CPR certified.
As you can see, I love learning! I have been blessed to have so many opportunities in my life that I want to give away what I have learned to empower others- especially those less fortunate than myself. As my grandmother always said “We only keep what we have by giving it away.”
I was drawn to the Loveland Initiative because I have a passion for being of service to others. I have been serving as Treasurer since August 2013 and have met many wonderful people who truly care about the work they do, which is so important to me.
I believe the Loveland Initiative is very deserving of the Community Block Grant due to the range of services we provide for our neighbors. With the assistance of the grant, we can obtain a physical location that we can call home. We will be able to reinstate one of our most beloved programs, the Resource Center. This program provides food, clothing and household items for free to our clients. We will be able to store donations and have a place where clients can shop for necessary items. Having a permanent location for our organization provides a sense of security to our clients knowing that we will always be there to assist in their times of need.
Please assist us in obtaining a home for our organization and providing a sense of security and permanency for our clients.
Please consider the impact and range of services this grant will offer our clients when considering the Loveland Initiative a recipient of this money.
Melanie Church Treasurer for “The Loveland Initiative”
This note was sent to City Hall by Bayy Kuhn:
I will be unable to attend the public hearing tonight to make my comments, so I wanted to drop you a quick note.
As a former board member of the Loveland Initiative, I've seen first hand the positive impact that they have made on the lower income families in this city.
Their Backpack program and Christmas Toy Store are only two examples where they have been able to provide families with things that they may not have otherwise been able to obtain on their own.
They are also the only organization that I'm aware of that has a program that brings this community together on Martin Luther King day.
This organization is ran solely by volunteers, and relies on the funding that they receive from our community donations to survive. They also do not currently have a location to work out of, which makes it even more difficult for them to continue the positive work that they do.
I would strongly encourage the members of City Council to give their consideration to the Loveland Initiative's application for funding from the block grant program.
Approving their application will allow them to continue to make a positive difference in our city.
This note was sent to City Hall by Jill Luti:
Hello! My name is Jill Luti and my Husband , Mark, and I live in the Heights of Loveland with our four daughters.
We have been home owners here in Loveland for over 8 years now. We are a low-income family, trying to stretch a dollar to make ends meet. We are so fortunate to have these wonderful programs offered by the Loveland Initiative, they are one of our most valuable resources to make sure our children had what they needed over the years.
They offer us a sigh of relief, they have our backs, and we couldn't do it on our own without them!
My children look forward to going to the Back To School Backpack program before each school year starts! The school supplies, snacks, toiletries, hoodies, shoes, and haircuts make a huge difference and the kids are so happy!
The staff/coordinators are very helpful and understanding of my two Daughters with Autism and their special needs as well.
Then the Christmas Shopping event allows us as parents to supplement our shopping lists at a low cost, I think we spent less that $50 last year for gifts for our four daughters. So we are looking forward to that again this year as well! I know my youngest has already asked me about shopping for her family again at the Kid Gift Shop up at the Methodist church by the Oasis. She is the only one young enough left under 12 out of my children to be able to participate.
My girls have never went to Cool School, but I know many who do. We are just too busy, but I am glad it is offered.
So please know that these programs need the support and help they deserve to keep running for many years to come, passing it down to the next generation.
I am so glad that we got to be part of it, our children have flourished over the years in school and outside of school with the help of the Loveland Initiative!
This note was sent to City Hall by Shannon Knutson:
As a current education student at the University of Cincinnati, Loveland High School alumna, and new board member of the Loveland Initiative, I see a number of reasons why the Community Block Grant would greatly advance the mission of the Loveland Initiative, which is to provide educational support and assistance to under-served children and their families.
In my education courses, I am learning about the importance of providing resources and partnerships for all students, especially those who are under-served, to help them thrive in school. Since 1996, the Loveland Initiative has shown its ongoing commitment to under-served students and their families with programs such as the Back to School Backpack Drive, Cool School, and “Set for Success.”
With the Community Block Grant, the Loveland Initiative would be able to strengthen its impact on the community by establishing a permanent workspace in which volunteers could collaborate on these and other programs to better serve members of the Loveland community.
As a Loveland alumna, I have seen peers who struggled in school because their families could not afford supplies or spend time helping them with homework. The Loveland Initiative has programs that help provide students with supplies and homework assistance; however, without a base of operations, organizing the programs is much more challenging.
As a new board member, I have witnessed the commitment of the board members to their cause and community. If given this grant, the focus of this organization would be more driven towards helping the community, and not diverted by concerns over where to hold meetings.
In conclusion, the work of the Loveland Initiative benefits the Loveland community and will only become more beneficial to the community, if given the Community Block Grant.
Thank you for your time and consideration of this organization.
My name is Debora Jones I'm a board member of the Loveland Initiative. I believe that with this grant we can achieve so much. In the past we have had to share a space with the local churches in order to services our clients .If we had a space of our own we could better serve them. I hope that we will be considered for the Block Grant.
Thank you for your time.
This note was sent to City Hall by Mary Hensley:
Hello, my name is Mary. I have lived in Loveland Since 2006. I am a single parent of 2 boys. My oldest son graduated from Loveland High School in June and my youngest is in the 7th grade at LMS. Being a single parent I have had to use The Loveland Initiative and the services they provide.
Getting a backpack full of the needed supplies for my children to start school is such a blessing and weight off my shoulders. It allows me to send my children to school feeling prepared and ready to learn.
Words can not express what the Christmas Toy store provides for my family. Being able to shop for my children at prices I can actually afford, brought tears to my eyes the first year I used the program. It made me feel good that I was the one buying my kids Christmas gifts and not having to rely on other charities as well as being able to pick their gifts out myself. Every year since 2006 I have provided my children’s Christmas from the Toy Store.
In 2009 I wanted to give back to my community as well as to a wonderful organization that has done so much for my family. I started volunteering for The Loveland Initiative in late 2009 and became a board member in 2010. I am currently the Vice President on the board. During my time as a board member I have been involved in several fund raisers as well as volunteering and leading several programs.
In 2010 when The Loveland Initiative was operating out of the Northstar Community of Grace church, I took part as project leader for The Loveland Initiative’s Resource Room. The Resource Room provided clothing, household items as well as some food for families in need in the community. I took a lot of pride in this room and enjoyed helping the community. I had totally revamped the Resource Room and made sure there was nice stuff for the clients free of charge. We were opened 3 days out of the week and during that time the Resource Room serviced about 80 clients a month. Our clients relied on our Resource room to provide their family with clothes. The room had clothes for adults as well and I always had people come looking for clothes for a new job or an interview. We were always able to help them find things to help them get the job or clothes to wear to work.
It was such a blessing for me to be able to provide people with things they needed for themselves as well as their families. There is no other place in our community like the Resource Room. It served and great need here in the Loveland community and is greatly missed. I am asked by clients all the time where the room went or when we will get a space for another room.
I am also the project leader for our Christmas Toy Store. Last year we had over 200 children signed up for our program. We were able to provide all those children with a substantial Christmas. We were able to raise over $4000 and granted a $2500 and $1500 in scholarships to Loveland students. For me to be a part of such a wonderful program and see the happy and very thankful faces of the parents and grandparents shopping for their families is priceless.
I am truly hoping that the city will see fit to provide The Loveland Initiative with the Community Block Grant. We are in the community trying to make a difference in the lives of the under served in the Loveland community. We provide positive programs and services that make a huge difference in our community.
The Lynch's have been a large part of bringing suicide awareness and education to the forefront in our community. The Cincinnati Chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention cannot thank them enough for their courage and for sharing their story. It gives so many others permission and helping stop the stigma that still exists today. It is not about how they died, but how they lived.
(Debra Clancy is the Board Chair The Cincinnati Chapter of AFSP)
Mershon fired the first shot and hopefully City Hall will address her concerns
with some innovative ideas and support
by Cati O’Keefe
I really feel for Ellen Mershon and her neighbors. (It’s pretty bleak in Loveland Heights and real blight might be the future) How sad that her home, which is in a place that is perfect for retiring in, is being overrun by miscreants and criminals. But let's not blame it on renters as a group. I think the condition of the houses/properties is at the root of the community's troubles.
Home ownership is just one American dream. Renting a house and living without the cares of homeownership is also an American Dream.
One of the reasons for the housing crisis was the fact that people owned homes who would have been better off renting--many people don't understand the real cost of owning a home (taxes, insurance, utilities, house maintenance, yard maintenance, etc.) when they buy. If they can't keep up with the costs, they foreclose/short sale, and that is bad for their credit, their families, and neighborhoods like The Heights.
The issue here is that the rent (slum) lords often don't keep the properties up, which attracts the kind of people who don't tend to be the best neighbors. Landlords don't use leases that spell out how the yard should be maintained. They don't kick out bad renters. They don't keep rents at levels that will attract the right kinds of renters to a neighborhood (that is, rather than fixing a place up they leave it a dump and keep the rent low just to keep it occupied).
We have five rental properties so I know a bit about how this works. We had to kick some renters out. We had to educate others on what a well-mowed lawn looks like. We've learned a lot of lessons the hard way and we aren't perfect, but our goal has been/is to make Loveland a better place to live, not a haven for low-lifes.
Because a segment of the aging boomer population doesn't want to deal with home maintenance and millennials are demonstrating a penchant to rent (having seen their parents' experiences with foreclosures and struggles on the work treadmill to afford a house) rental properties will probably remain in demand.
This makes The Heights decline particularly sad: It is a pretty neighborhood, with mature trees, nice-sized lots, winding streets, and affordable houses all pushed up to the street, which theoretically fosters more neighborhood interaction. Many of today's new TNDs (Traditional Neighborhood Development) are being built to mimic places like the Heights, although they usually miss the mark with their driveways that can't accommodate anything longer than a Fiat 500 and their fake-o super white fences that don't connect at the corners, keeping nothing in and nothing out ... The Heights also boasts one-story homes, which are great for aging in place and for those in wheelchairs. So the neighborhood needs to take itself back.
Mershon fired the first shot and hopefully the city will address her concerns with some innovative ideas and support.
Mershon mentions that the police have been great and the neighborhood watch group has 341 likes on Facebook. Well, of course they have lots of likes; who wouldn't like the fact that a fraction of the 500 households maintains a neighborhood watch. There is a tangible benefit to that (lower crime). But would those same people "like" and participate in a group that demanded the neighborhood clean itself up house by house? Would they clean up their own house/yard? I hope so because that is what it is going to take.
I'm sure the homeowners' association there has done some of the things I will list but in case not:
They need to go door to door and talk about initiatives to improve the aesthetics of the neighborhood, enlisting the help of renters and homeowners alike, throw block parties to foster camaraderie (invite the police/fire department/city council), organize weekend clean up days to help people keep their yards and fences maintained, organize a group to help people either fix up or tear down the godawful accessory buildings on some of the properties, organize an event for all of Loveland, like a winter sledding hill or something unique to the neighborhood, so more of Loveland will be invested in their success, establish a "quit walking around without your shirt on day"—sorry, had to throw that in, and while I'm at it, nothing says junkyard neighborhood more than dogs tied on lines barking their heads off all day and night, presumably guarding the still ... :-) :-) :-)
Also, they need to relentlessly use the nuisance and property maintenance laws that are already on the books to enforce the changes needed to attract the neighbors they want.
Last, to comment on the point that Montgomery and Blue Ash require landlords to "register" renters: Montgomery requires us to fill out a form that says who is renting the house so they can go after them for tax revenue. But I don't see how registering or listing renters with the city will have any effect on how those renters respect their homes, themselves, or their neighbors.
Best of luck to The Heights!
Thanks, as always, Loveland Magazine, for covering the issues that matter to Loveland residents. I hope you will keep us posted on The Heights revitalization.
(Cati O’Keefe is a homeowner in the Historic West Loveland District of Loveland)
Cancer does not discriminate, not even among Bearcats
by Caitlin Whitehurst
In June 2014, University of Cincinnati alumna Amanda Reed Danisas (A&S ’10) was diagnosed with stage 4 neuroendocrine carcinoma, a type of cancer that attacks different tissues and organs throughout the body. According to a 2011 study published in Cancer and Metastasis Reviews, only 5 in 100,000 people are diagnosed with this type of cancer each year.
Amanda Reed Danisas, a Loveland mother of two young children, has stage 4 neuroendocrine carcinoma, a type of cancer that attacks different tissues and organs throughout her body.
Because of the advanced stage and pervasiveness of her cancer, the 29-year-old mother of two faces an uphill battle. The cancer has spread to her cervix, pelvic bone, lymph nodes, liver and lungs and treatment has been costly. But a Bearcat never gives up, and Amanda is finding support among other UC alumni.
“Fellow alumni have stepped up since learning of my diagnoses by getting the word out about the Fight in Black & White and by trying to find ways to raise money and awareness about this rare cancer,” said Amanda.
The Fight in Black & White is a benefit organized by Amanda’s family and friends. The Oct. 24 event will feature live music, a split the pot, silent auction, light hors d’oeuvres and more to raise money for Amanda’s medical costs. The black and white theme is a nod to the symbol that is often paired with neuroendocrine cancers – the zebra.
In medicine, the term zebra is used colloquially for a rare disease or condition. It stems from a phrase all medical students hear before becoming doctors, “When you hear hoofbeats, think horses, not zebras.” Zebra stripes are featured prominently on the Facebook invitation for Amanda’s benefit.
Caitlin Whitehurst is the Asst. Director of New Media & PR at the UC Foundation
Although Amanda's family have helped assuage some of the financial burden of the portion of medical bills not covered by insurance as well as household expenses, bills are quickly surpassing financial resources.
Here's where the Loveland community come in to play...
Four Ways You Can Help:
1) Attend "Come Join the Fight in Black & White" at RSVP Event Center on Friday, October 24th. Tickets can be purchased via Eventbrite or by calling RSVP at 513-965-0511.
2) Contribute a donation item, service or theme basket for silent auction, taking place at the event. (Contact Scott Fair, 513-652-9116)
3) Make a deposit to the bank account set up to help defray medical costs at any PNC bank location. Make the check out to Amanda Fund for Amanda Danisas.
Monday morning, Loveland Magazine published a guest column from Loveland Councilwoman, Pam Gross in which she sought public comment before she votes yea or nay at Tuesday evenings special council meeting where Loveland Station will be on the agenda.
Thank you for seeking residents' input! I have to echo the sentiments of others. Parking is already inadequate and I therefore have to avoid high-traffic hours. I love the farmers' market but have stopped going because circling around for 30 minutes to find parking (and not even a space in close proximity) is ridiculous. I'd love to see shopping and restaurants go in as long as there is a solution to the already existing (and what would inevitably become worse) parking and traffic flow issues. As for apartments, I am not a fan of the idea. I'm no expert and I'm assuming council has done its due diligence and studied the demographics high-end apartments would attract. That said, high-end apartments, to me, sound as though they would attract those without kids who have little stake in the school system. As I have small children, it would greatly upset me to see this segment of the population vote down levies to avoid higher taxes for schools they don't have much of a stake in ( other than property value).
The trains were here long before the homes. If you don't like train whistles then don't move here. I moved here because I like the train whistles. They tried to silence them once before & it was dropped! If streets could be made one way, that would help the traffic but it can't be done because of the overhead trestle.
Parking is my biggest concern. There isn't sufficient parking now so adding additional retailers and residents will create even more of an issue. I reviewed the parking suggestions that were presented a few months ago and I found them ridiculous. One of the recommendations was to park at Grailville to access the downtown developments. I think this seems absurd. I am very excited about this new development but without proper infrastructure, it will be a failure.
Parking-Parking-Parking! Cannot stress enough how important a parking plan is for the downtown area. Bike Trail, shops, restaurants, farmer's market, parks - all reasons we love Loveland but all reasons parking must be at the forefront of ALL plans, not an afterthought. And VINYL SIDING?!?! Is that true?!?! We need these new buildings to blend in and have the feel of Old Loveland - NOT some slap-on addition. Thanks for hearing us.
Parking... Imagine 94 units with owners parking one or two cars in the area. Even with a dedicated parking garage, every Friday and Saturday the area will be saturated with their family and friends. A three or four story building? Loveland as we know it will be swallowed... whole. The architecture of these buildings has to be nailed... on the money. Nobody wants a trendy set-up that will look outdated in 10-20 years.
Pam- Thank you for seeking some opinions. Parking and traffic are our households biggest concerns as well. I would love to frequent the farmer's market but cringe at the parking issue. It is a mad house. The current merchants put signs up to ensure they do not lose any business due to patron not being able to park on their sight. Clearly the merchants know the parking is a huge issue. In addition,the bike path is a huge attraction. Perhaps a better plan to park when biking ONLY at another spot outside of downtown could help. It is tough when someone consumes a parking spot for such an extended period of time. Parking and traffic flow in and out options HAVE to be addressed before the plan to build is executed. However, downtown could use more shops and restaurants. I would like to see the inner square be more inviting with the retail/food options and parking in the interior of the square. I have seen the concept of the retailer/shop owner living above their shop and I like that idea versus transient apartment dwellers. Sometimes traffic is so heavy that it seems we need an overpass to go over when not actually seeking to go into downtown.
I agree with Amy and will add that many of us avoid that area completely during high traffic times. As construction proceeds, the traffic situation will only get worse as a result of construction traffic and road blockages. Have you seen the chaos that can and does occur when emergency vehicles try to move through town? Traffic and parking issues must be addressed before they get any worse. Develop[ment should be considered but, only after solving the existing problems.
Who would want to live next to railroad tracks? I would not pay rent to be woken by a train every morning. I also heard these buildings would be done in vinyl siding. If that is true the projects does not sound upscale to me. I would be happy with shops and restaurants with a lot of parking.
Parking is inadequate now. On Tuesdays, when the Farmers' market is in operation the traffic backs up all the way up the hill to Rich Road on West Loveland making it hard and time consuming to get to or through downtown. Would rather see businesses than apartments. Just my two cents. I often avoid downtown on weekends because of the lack of parking. If you want foot traffic for businesses, you have to have a place to park.
Regardless of Loveland Station, parking in downtown Loveland needs to be addressed. Why the current business owners haven't staged a revolt yet is beyond me. There is no reason that bikers should take up much of the available parking from people who want to frequent downtown businesses. Loveland Station will only compound this problem. That being said, the only thing worse than the current parking situation is the state of the building site. In the 3 years I've lived here, it's only become a bigger eye sore. As for traffic flow, why not eliminate the ability to turn left from Loveland Ave. onto Karl Brown Way? Same for Broadway onto 2nd St? This would keep traffic flowing more smoothly and eliminate some of the daily back ups. None of these problems are insurmountable. They simply require competent leadership and a willingness to stop dithering and take action. LETS GO!