Smith Rock State Park-Community Safety Concerns

While overcapacity is an issue for Smith Rock State Park, the issue spills over to our community in the form of crowded roads, discarded trash, livestock issues, and speeding. This impacts the quality of our rural life and potentially our lives by restricting access to our homes and property by emergency response teams.

Goals of the petition are to address the following issues:

  1. Improve Safety for pedestrians and local traffic. Overcapacity has forced visitors to park on the shoulder of east and westbound Wilcox Ave, 17th street, and 33rd street. These are narrow and shoulder-less roads that weren't designed for parking or foot traffic. Visitors walk on the roadway up to a mile to and from the park. This creates a bottleneck that poses hazards to pedestrians and drivers as well as impedes access by emergency response vehicles.  The county was willing to address the issue on Crooked River Dr. by prohibiting parking, but has abandoned the residents of the additional roadways. Overflow parking on Wilcox, 17th, and 33rd has become the norm, especially when the park closes their overflow parking lot.
  2. Protect Community Safety During Pandemic- Since the park has reopened, we've had a tremendous influx of out of town visitors whom exhibit a blatant disregard of pandemic safety measures. Overcrowding in the park makes it impossible to maintain social distancing during the pandemic - especially on the weekends. In addition, excessive non-local visitors pose a threat to our community that has more limited medical resources as compared to larger metro areas.

 SHORT TERM SOLUTIONS:

Immediately implement the following solutions until the 20 year master plan can adequately address the safety and capacity issues:

  1. Open up the overflow parking lot on Crooked River Road during warmer months (Memorial Day-Labor Day).
  2. Eliminate all parking on Wilcox Avenue, 17th, and 33rd Streets via signage and enforcement.
  3. Once the overflow parking lot is full, post a sign that the PARK IS FULL, PLEASE COME ANOTHER DAY.
  4. Lower the speed on Crooked River Rd and Wilcox to better serve the high traffic at this junction, thus reducing the chance of a serious accident.
  5. Re-assess after the 20 year plan has been finalized.
Update #1about a year ago
WE NEED your help-TODAY- Al meets with Deschutes Commissioners, Roads , & Park tomorrow at 9 AM. They are reading your comments. More signatures and COMMENTS, will help Al make our case. Share with household members and community before tomorrows meeting.
SIGN PETITION:
https://www.thepetitionsite.com/784/088/298/make-smith-rock-state-park-great-again/
2.Neighbors Kathy Clair, Mark Offenbacher, or Luis Elenes
3. The Pump House or hardware store
Thank you
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