Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Task Force: The Corvallis City Council will be looking at the next step for the city’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Task Force at their meeting on Feb. 6. The council empaneled the task force last year to combine two existing advisory groups: the Community Involvement & Diversity Advisory Board (CIDAB), and the King Legacy Advisory Board (KLAB).
“Both boards worked on issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion. The task force was asked to review the current structure of both boards, examine the other potential avenues for community engagement on current issues, and make a recommendation about combining the two groups into a single advisory body focused specifically on these topics,” said Public Information Officer Patrick Rollens.
City staff is asking the council to move forward with approving both committees combining into one work group. Minutes, agendas, and other meeting materials for the Task Force are posted in the City’s online archive at https://apps.corvallisoregon.gov/webdocs/showdoc.aspx?docID=2934626.
OSU Land Development Changes: At the same meeting, Councilors will look at a proposal to adopt an updated land development code for Oregon State University. City staff is asking the council to look at redefining the current campus transportation facilities as well as street design and standards relating to them.
In 2021, Community Development Department Director Paul Bilotta had advised the council that Oregon State University sent a letter to the City of Corvallis stating that OSU’s goal with the amendments was to facilitate a network of safe, universally accessible streetscapes that prioritize active transportation modes and transit, while protecting the historic and natural features of campus.
“The amendments would also allow for a variety of transportation facility designs that may be more difficult to accomplish under current standards. Possible examples include reconfiguring existing facilities to include pedestrian plazas with emergency vehicle access and designing bike/pedestrian or transit corridors with limited automobile access,” said BIlotta. “The substantive changes to development standards are relatively minimal; the main purpose of the application is to narrow the list of which transportation facilities the OSU Streets standards apply to.”
At the Jan. 3 city council meeting the council agreed to initiate the text amendment and directed staff to evaluate the request according to applicable review criteria.
The proposed changes also include some housekeeping issues, such as renaming housing types specifically allowed in the OSU Zone to align with the Middle Housing Code Update and changing “shalls” to “musts” in amended sections, consistent with direction from the City Attorney’s Office.
“OSU and City Staff spent several months reviewing and revising the language and graphics contained in the proposed amendments,” said Bilotta. “The balance of the changes are largely for cleanup or to provide clarity.”
The Planning Commission conducted a public hearing on Dec. 7, 2022. Following the public hearing, the planning commission deliberated, and voted to forward the request to the council with a recommendation for approval. The council will look at the recommendations at the Feb. 6 meeting.
You can click here if you would like to attend the Feb. 6 City Council meeting, it starts at 6 p.m. The meeting agenda and packet is also available on the same webpage.
- By: Jennifer Williams