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City seeks applicants for Westside Bike Mobility Project Community Advisory Committee - 07/10/19

Vancouver, Wash. – The City of Vancouver is seeking applicants for a new Westside Bike Mobility Project Community Advisory Committee (CAC). The CAC will review a range of options and provide recommendations for a safer north-south travel route in west Vancouver, including improvements benefiting pedestrians, cyclists, transit riders and drivers.

This phase of the project will focus specifically on Columbia, Washington, Daniels and Franklin streets. The CAC will consider the benefits and tradeoffs of different alternatives, including safety, accessibility, mobility, neighborhood livability and parking.

“The City’s vision is for a safe, multipurpose north-south corridor that connects northwest neighborhoods and Burnt Bridge Creek with downtown Vancouver and the waterfront,” said Principal Transportation Planner Jennifer Campos. “We are looking forward to working with the committee to help shape a package of improvements that will enhance safety and mobility for people who walk, bike, drive and take transit.”

The formation of a community advisory committee launches the third phase of the Westside Bike Mobility Project, which will focus on Columbia, Washington, Daniels and Franklin streets. The CAC will be comprised of diverse stakeholders, including residents living on and around these streets, members of neighborhood associations and neighborhood coalitions, business owners, community organization representatives, pedestrians, transit riders/representatives, cyclists, and members of existing boards and commissions (including the Parking Advisory Committee and the Planning Commission).

Community members interested in serving on the CAC can learn more and apply at www.cityofvancouver.us/westsideapp through July 23, 2019. Paper applications are also available at City Hall, 415 W 6th Street, Vancouver, WA 98660.

Visit www.cityofvancouver.us/bikemobility for more information and to share comments regarding the project. For additional questions, please contact Jennifer Campos, Principal Transportation Planner at 360-487-7728 or .campos@cityofvancouver.us">jennifer.campos@cityofvancouver.us.

The Westside Bike Mobility Project is informed by a number of existing policies and plans previously adopted by Vancouver City Council, including the City’s Complete Streets Policy and the Westside Mobility Strategy.

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City seeks volunteer to serve on Lodging Tax Advisory Committee - 07/10/19

Vancouver, Washington – The City of Vancouver is seeking applicants for mid-term position on the City’s Lodging Tax Advisory Committee. Applications must be received by 5 p.m. Friday, Aug. 9.

The City is authorized to collect a 4% lodging tax on hotel, motel or bed and breakfast stays. The Lodging Tax Advisory Committee is a volunteer body that makes recommendations to the Vancouver City Council about how that tax revenue is spent. In 2018, the committee helped award $753,609 in lodging tax grants to local projects and events that increase tourism within the city.

Applicants for this open position must represent a nonprofit organization that would be eligible to apply for and receive lodging tax grant funding.

To apply online, visit www.cityofvancouver.us/boards. To request an application or for more information, contact Michelle Bartley in the City Manager’s Office by mail at City Hall, P.O. Box 1995, Vancouver, WA 98668-1995, by email at artley@cityofvancouver.us">Michelle.Bartley@cityofvancouver.us, or by calling 360-487-8607.

Lodging Tax Advisory Committee members serve two-year terms and meet 4-6 times per year. Guidelines for committee membership are set by the State of Washington through RCW 67.28.1817.

For more information about the committee, including links to past meeting minutes and agendas, visit www.cityofvancouver.us/ltac.

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City announces new culture, arts and heritage grants - 07/08/19

Vancouver, Washington – The City of Vancouver will start accepting applications for a new grant program for non-profit or government cultural, arts and heritage organizations in Vancouver July 8. A total of $100,000 will be awarded this year, with the recipients announced in late October.

“With the adoption of the City’s Culture, Arts, and Heritage Plan in April 2018, City Council recognized that arts, cultural and heritage programs enliven and elevate the livability of our community,” said Mayor Anne McEnerny-Ogle. “The success of our local artists, performers and historians ensure a vibrant and diverse Vancouver and is integral to the health of our local economy.”

Through the grant program, the City is seeking to fund projects that exemplify the best of the creative community through performances, exhibitions, events and other innovative collaborations for the public’s benefit.

Eligible projects include performances, exhibitions, special events, infrastructure improvements and professional development programming. Proposals should demonstrate high artistic quality, innovation and creativity and should reflect, celebrate, and preserve the heritage and diversity found in our community.

Applications must be submitted online at www.cityofvancouver.us/culturegrants by 3 p.m. Sept. 11.

Interested applicants are encouraged to attend one of two scheduled workshops to learn more about the grant process and guidelines. Workshops will take place at 4 p.m. Wednesday, July 17 and 6 p.m. Wednesday, July 24 at Vancouver City Hall, 415 W. Sixth St., Vancouver.

More information about the grants, including the review process and full guidelines, is available at www.cityofvancouver.us/culturegrants

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City accepting applications for Affordable Housing Fund shelter project grants - 07/05/19

Vancouver, Wash. – The City of Vancouver will make a minimum of $300,000 in Affordable Housing Funds available for projects that provide shelter to people experiencing homelessness. Projects that increase the capacity of the shelter system will receive priority in the review process. Eligible uses of funds include costs associated with shelter acquisition, construction, rehabilitation and operations.

Local government agencies, non-profit organizations, faith-based organizations, for-profit developers and individual property owners may apply. Creative project ideas are encouraged to address the growing shelter needs of those experiencing homelessness in our community. Projects must be located in Vancouver city limits. 

Voters passed the Affordable Housing Fund ballot measure in November 2016 with a 57.6% yes rate, the highest margin in the City’s history. The fund serves households earning up to 50% of area median income (AMI) (approximately $43,950 for a family of four) through community projects and programs that develop, acquire or rehabilitate housing; provide rental assistance and self-sufficiency services; and build, maintain homeless shelters or increase beds for people who are homeless. 

Applications for Affordable Housing Fund shelter project grants are due on or before Aug. 21 at 5 p.m. The Vancouver City Council will make final funding decisions by October 2019.

An optional open house for interested applicants will take place from 3:30 to 5 pm on July 16 at Vancouver City Hall Aspen Room (415 W. 6th Street). Detailed application guidelines and a link to the online application are available at www.cityofvancouver.us/affordablehousingfund.

To request the application guidelines in another format or language, please contact Peggy Sheehan at 360-487-7952, TTY: 360-487-8602, WA Relay: 711 or by email at peggy.sheehan@cityofvancouver.us.

City seeks volunteers to write statements for, against proposed charter amendments - 06/25/19

Vancouver, Washington – The Vancouver City Council is seeking volunteers to write pro and con statements about seven proposed amendments to the City’s charter. The statements will be included in this year’s Voters’ Pamphlet, published by the Clark County Auditor’s Office in advance of the Nov. 5 general election. 

Clark County’s election regulations require the Vancouver City Council appoint committees of up to three people to write pro and con statements. Statements are limited to 250 words each and must be completed by Aug.12, 2019. To volunteer to serve on a pro or con committee, please contact Jan Bader at 360-487-8606 or ader@cityofvancouver.us">jan.bader@cityofvancouver.us.

The proposed charter amendments make changes to the Salary Review Commission membership and process; clarify councilmember qualifications for office; elaborate on the procedures for filling city council vacancies; make a revision to the City’s claims process; clarify the City’s contracting authority; and make several other administrative changes.

The charter serves as the City’s constitution. Every five years, the City appoints a committee of 15 residents to review the charter and make recommendations to the City Council on potential changes. The 2019 Charter Review Committee recommended seven changes for the charter that Vancouver City Council voted to place on the ballot for the Nov. 5, 2019, general election.  

Complete text of the proposed charter review amendments maybe found at www.cityofvancouver.us/charterreview.

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Music, movies and more--summer fun in Vancouver - 06/25/19

Vancouver, Washington – Discover the art, culture and natural beauty of Vancouver without breaking the bank. Vancouver Parks and Recreation has a full line up of events planned this summer, including festivals, concerts, movie nights, and charity runs and walks. Check out local craft vendors and breweries one day and enjoy a movie under the stars the next!

Make the most of your summer and explore these exciting community events in Vancouver.

Party on the waterfront

Be sure to check out the only event happening at the new Vancouver Waterfront Park this year! The Summer Celebration on the Waterfront presented by iQ Credit Union is on Friday, July 5. Listen to local band, Top Shelf, perform under the bandstand from 6 to 8 p.m. Stick around and watch "Mary Poppins Returns" on the big screen at dusk.

Bring a picnic dinner, grab a bite at one of the top-notch waterfront restaurants, or enjoy on-site food trucks. It all happens at Waterfront Park, 695 Waterfront Way, at the east end of the park near the basalt seating.

Free concerts

Dance your summer afternoons or evenings away at one of Vancouver’s three summer concert series. Each concert is free, family friendly and a perfect opportunity to hear some of the Pacific Northwest’s most talented artists. Enjoy food from local vendors, or bring your own food (no alcohol permitted).

The Columbia Tech Center Sunday Sounds Concerts presented by Gaynor Automotive, hits the stage on Sundays at 6 p.m. There are performances each week from July 7 to Aug. 11, with exciting bands like Hit Machine and Precious Byrd, featuring Grammy winning bassist, Lonnie Chapin. New this year, visit the beer and wine garden, benefitting the Vancouver Farmers Market. The concerts take place at the Columbia Tech Center Park, Southeast Sequoia Circle at Southeast Tech Center Drive in east Vancouver.

Enjoy some tunes on your lunch break at the Noon Rhythms Concerts presented by Hilton Vancouver. Running from July 10 to Aug. 14, you can add a little musical inspiration to your work week each Wednesday at noon with these concerts at Esther Short Park, 605 Esther St. in downtown Vancouver. Noon Rhythms offers an eclectic performance lineup that includes the Vancouver Pops Orchestra and the Caribbean flavor of Dina y los Rumberos. New this year, grab a bite to eat or pick up some local produce during the show at the Esther Short Farmers Market!

Summer is official with the start of Vancouver’s signature music event, the Riverview Community Bank Six to Sunset Concerts, which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year. Esther Short Park is the place to be every Thursday at 6 p.m. with performances running from July 11 to Aug. 15. This year’s stellar schedule includes Stone in Love, Hit Factory featuring Patrick Lamb and Super Diamond, a nationally touring Neil Diamond tribute band endorsed by Neil himself. Raise a glass to summer fun at Pub in the Park, supporting Leadership Clark County.

Free movies

Start your weekend off right with the Vancouver Parks and Recreation free Summer Movie Series presented by HAPO Community Credit Union. Held at parks throughout Vancouver each Friday between July 12 and Aug. 16, all movies are family friendly and will be closed captioned. Show up at 7 p.m. to enjoy fun activities before the movie begins. The big screen comes to life at dusk with blockbusters like “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” “Bumblebee” and “Captain Marvel.”

Festivals

Summer is the season for festivals, fun runs, and cultural events in Vancouver! While some offer free admission, they all provide fantastic opportunities to connect with neighbors and celebrate the wide variety of interests that make our city such a fantastic place to live. The Recycled Arts Festival, held June 29 to 30, is popular for visitors of all ages. Experience something new when you attend cultural events like 4 Days of Aloha July 25 to 28, or the Fourth Plain Multicultural Festival Sept. 7.

Dog parks

Give your pup the best summer ever with Barks in the Parks from Vancouver Parks and Recreation! Barks in the Parks is a series of three pop-up, off-leash dog parks hosted in neighborhoods throughout Vancouver. Let your pooch enjoy time with new fur-ends as you connect with other dog lovers in your community.

  • July 1-19 | Endeavour Park | 2701 N.E. Four Seasons Lane
  • July 22-August 10 | Bagley Park | 4607 Plomondon St.
  • August 12-27 | David Douglas Park | 1016 N. Garrison Road

Plan your summer

Seize the summer and save with Vancouver Parks and Recreation events! Just remember, while admission to all of the events highlighted here are free, consider setting aside some funds to purchase food, gifts and other locally made treats from the hundreds of local artists and vendors you'll encounter this summer. 

Connect with Vancouver Parks and Recreation on Facebook or visit www.cityofvancouver.us/events to plan your perfect summer in the Couve!

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About Vancouver Parks and Recreation

Vancouver Parks and Recreation builds upon the City’s strong legacy of parks, natural areas and recreation dating back to the dedication of Esther Short Park in 1853. Each month, the Parks and Recreation Department provides hundreds of recreation opportunities for youth, adults, seniors and persons with disabilities at its two community centers. Parks and Recreation operates 1,600 acres of parkland at 113 sites, including 90 parks, 20 miles of trails and many natural areas for the City of Vancouver. The Parks and Recreation Department cultivates community in the City and beyond through on-going special events and volunteer programs that celebrate the City’s natural spaces.

Paving Work to Close E 39th Street's I-5 Southbound Ramps on June 25 - 06/20/19

Paving of 39th Street, I-5 to Washington Street, June 24-28, follows Water Utility Project

Southbound Interstate 5 on- and off-ramps at East 39th Street will be closed from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday, June 25, to allow for paving work following a City of Vancouver water main construction project. Drivers who typically use those southbound ramps to and from 39th Street, on the west side of I-5, are urged to plan ahead and take an alternate route.

Tuesday’s work is part of the overall paving planned for portions of East/West 39th Street, from Washington Street to I-5, from Monday, June 24, through Friday, June 28. In general, construction hours are 7 a. m. to 5 p.m., though at least one night of work should be expected. Weather permitting, here’s what is currently planned:

- From Washington Street to Creston Avenue, crews will be grinding the existing surface, then paving in the parking and bike lane areas where the water main was installed, along the south side of West/East 39th Street.

- From Creston Avenue to the I-5 overpass, crews will be grinding the existing surface and paving in the eastbound (south side) travel lane. Please note: Paving of the intersection of Main and East 39th street is expected to occur at night.

Traffic will be maintained through the project area using flaggers, cones and signs. However, expect possible delays and allow more time if traveling through the construction zone. Drivers, bicyclists and pedestrians should be alert to construction workers and equipment in the roadway, lane shifts, and rough roads. Street parking on portions of 39th Street will be unavailable where paving is occurring. Please check “No Parking” signs, which will be posted in advance. 

The new water main line installed along the south side of 39th Street, from Washington Street to Interstate 5, replaced an old water line that dated back to 1911. The project is funded by the City of Vancouver’s Water Utility in keeping with ongoing efforts to improve, maintain and protect the community water supply and systems.

City Permit Center hours changing July 15 - 06/19/19

Vancouver, Washington – Effective July 15, 2019, the City of Vancouver's Permit Center counter will open starting at 9 a.m., instead of 8 a.m. The change comes alongside the City’s recent transition to ePlans, a 100 percent digital permit application and plan review process.

“As the City’s online resources become more robust, the demand for in-person counter hours has decreased,” said Development Review Manager Jason Nortz. “However, we’re excited to provide our customers with a 24 hours a day, seven days a week opportunity to access our services through the online ePlans system.”

ePlans is a web-based system for electronic plan review that provides a convenient central hub for development project groups (including applicants and City reviewers) to communicate and complete the entire plan review process online, from the initial application stage to the final approved plan set. Electronic submittals reduce the need for physical trips to Vancouver City Hall to drop off or pick up plans or make payments, and reduce the need to print hard copies. Customers can also check the status of their submittals or review at any time.

The City has invested significant time in developing a more robust online resource guide, tools and in-person training to support customers in making the switch to ePlans. Customers can visit www.cityovancouver.us/ePlans for tutorial videos and step-by-step instructions. In-person training is also available and can be customized for businesses. Interested customers can contact Lisa Eruhow-Hagan at uhow-Hagan@cityofvancouver.us">Lisa.Eruhow-Hagan@cityofvancouver.us or 360- 487-7688 to schedule training.

New Permit Center Hours as of July 15, 2019:

  • 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday – Friday
  • Closed from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. daily
  • Closed Saturday and Sunday

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Harper's Playground Design in Salem, Oregon
Harper's Playground Design in Salem, Oregon
Public invited to preview the vision for Vancouver's first fully-inclusive playground (Photo) - 06/18/19

Vancouver, Wash. – Vancouver Parks and Recreation, in partnership with Harper’s Playground, invite the public to attend an open house for Project Play: Marshall Park on Wednesday, June 26, to preview the vision for a fully-inclusive playground at Marshall Park. Thanks to a $500,000 pledge from an anonymous donor, the project is currently 25 percent funded. The event will kick off a community-wide campaign to invest in Clark County children and families.

“We are eager to share these exciting plans with the community,” said Parks and Recreation Director, Julie Hannon. “We are committed to making Vancouver parks welcoming spaces where people of all ages and abilities can build connections with neighbors and nature. Creating fully-inclusive play spaces with the support of Harper’s Playground is an important step toward a more equitable Vancouver.”

Event Details: 

Date/Time: June 26, 2019, 4 to 6:30 p.m.

Location: Marshall Park, 1015 E. McLoughlin Blvd.

  • This event is free and will include refreshments and interactive art stations where people of all ages and abilities can share their dreams for the future of the playground
  • Preview architectural renderings and pictures of materials and equipment
  • Provide feedback on the current plan and help dream up new ideas to add to the vision
  • Discover how to support this project and help create a more welcoming and equitable Vancouver
  • Presenters include: Julie Hannon, Vancouver parks and recreation director; G Cody QJ Goldberg, Harper’s Playground executive director; Holly Williams, Vancouver parks and recreation advisory commission chair and Terry Snyder, Vancouver parks and recreation landscape architect

The most recent U.S Census data shows that one in five Americans has a disability. Even when playgrounds incorporate ramps, barrier-free travel routes and accessible play options, these modifications do not create a truly inclusive and welcoming space where people of all ages and abilities can play together and thrive. The new Marshall Park playground is being designed using the Harper’s Playground “radically inclusive” model, which is proven to inspire all visitors to play, including accessibility for caregivers and a strong connection to nature.

Harper’s Playground was founded by Cody and April Goldberg in 2010, to create a play space for their daughter, Harper, who uses wheels to get around. “We are designing the Marshall Park playground to be accessible and adaptive so that the space is physically inviting; we are highlighting nature so that it’s socially inviting; and we are being creative with artistic details so that the playground is emotionally inviting,” explains Cody Goldberg. “We are thrilled with the collaborative nature of the partnership we have with Vancouver Parks and Recreation and thus far the community support for our shared vision has been outstanding too.”

Learn more about this event and the future vision for Marshall Park playground at www.cityofvancouver.us/projectplay