Minutes - May 26, 2009

SENA Meeting Minutes: May 26, 2009

Kathleen Bronson started the meeting with a presentation about how to make Albany more bicycle-friendly. She explained the different Bikeway Types, which include: Shared Lane Markings, Bike Lanes, Bicycle Blvds, and Bicycle Route Signs. She asked the community where they would like to have bike routes established. She also passed out a comment form where you could write down your suggestions and then send them to the city.
Travis asked about bike parking. Kathleen responded they were planning to put in more bike parking areas and encouraged us to write down areas we felt needed bike parking on the comment form.
Mark suggested McCarty Ave as a better street to have a bicycle route, rather than Second Ave, which is busy and narrow.
JoAnn commented that people may want bicycle routes to popular areas of employment, so they can ride their bikes to work.
Tanya asked if Albany Med and St. Peter's were involved with the bicycle plan. Kathleen responded she's not sure how involved they are, but they have been contacted about the plan.
Kathleen concluded her presentation and invited everyone to come to the Bicycle Master Plan Public Meeting #2 at the Main Library on June 18th.

Tanya Owens gave a report on the Trinity Institution. There is a new exercise and dance activity for the youth. To take the classes, you can call and sign up for free. The number is 449-5155 x 127.

JoAnn announced someone wanted to open a restaurant and tavern with extended hours until 4am on 46 Morton Ave.
JoAnn also said the Summer Youth Employment with the City of Albany is now employing youth up to age 24.

Tom announced he was looking for teens to work in YO! (Youth Organics) and especially that he needed teens with experience filmmaking to attend the Youth Film Experience Program. Tom talked about the vacant lot project Grand St Community Arts is planning to do. They plan to look at vacant lots in the South End, ask the neighbors what they would like to see happen with the vacant lot, then assemble the resources necessary to make it happen.
Tom and Noriko gave a quick report on the Arise New Leader Training Program and talked about a one week training seminar about community organizing in the Bronx at Fordham University from July 12-18. The cost is $600. They're looking to put on fundraisers to help raise the money for people to go.

JoAnn said National Night Out on August 4th is also looking for volunteers and contributions.
JoAnn said there is a vacant lot on Alexander St between 39-55 where someone is dumping construction debris, asphalt and concrete. Properties for sale are also being vandalized. The plumbing was ripped out and there was water running at 25 Alexander St.

Joe from the Fire Dept. introduced himself, says he's new to SENA. He will pass on the information about the construction debris in the vacant lot on Alexander St to DGS. Joe announced that there are at least 100 bulidings in Albany that are unrepairable and need to be knocked down. The city is having problems contacting the owners of these vacant buildings.

Nellie Morton said there was an auto body shop on Alexander St which was releasing a very strong smell. Joe responded that they'll check that because all auto body shops need to have the proper air filters.

Joe asked about a Neighborhood Watch in the South End and said Pine Hills has a very active Neighborhood Watch which we can learn from. He suggested that maybe Arise could work in conjunction with a Neighborhood Watch.

Mark Beaudoin said on 59 Second Ave there was a vacant building where the 2nd floor was not boarded up. Joe responded all vacant buildings are supposed to be completely boarded up, explained the vacant building code, and the rules owners of vacant buildings need to comply with in order to keep their property.

Sarah from Plaza 23 said the Plaza 23 truck stop is open for more fundraising events (JoAnn's church held a car wash fundraising event which was successful).

JoAnn announced that some bus stops have been pulled in the changed routes, so to make sure people are aware if they take the bus.

Scott from the library reported that he is currently buying many books for the library and that all the renovation plans with Howe are moving along.

Kevin Grinwis gave a quick update on Omni Development Corp.

The meeting was adjorned. The next meeting was scheduled for June 23, 2009.