Riverfront astroturf is not for PE classes or club sports. Is it part of the UO Foundation’s secret Tracktown 2021 plans?

UO wants the Eugene planning commission to give it the right to put 4 astro-turf playing fields with lights just south of the Willamette river. They claim this is for intramural Rugby and PE and Rec classes.

I don’t buy it. I don’t have the Rugby participation data, but it’s not New Zealand. For Fall 2017 UO had a total of 7 sections of PE classes that need playing fields such as flag football, ultimate, and soccer with a total of 166 students. (In comparison there were 27 sections of Yoga type classes). These are 1 credit sections that meet for 2 hours a week. That’s a grand total of 14 hours a week on the playing fields.

These classes are not exactly surging in popularity among UO students. In Fall 2012 there were 9 sections. And while PE and Rec already have 2 lit astroturf fields by the Rec Center, they have no sections scheduled at night.

So what is this really about? I’m guessing it’s part of the UO Foundation’s top secret planning for the 2021 Track & Field Championships.

UO submits Conditional Use Permit to City for North Campus

2/28/2018: Yesterday, after a last-minute meeting between the administration and faculty opponents, the UO administration submitted its request to the city for a Conditional Use Permit that would allow it to put lighted astro-turf playing fields [sorry, I meant “outdoor classrooms”] and some buildings between the railroad tracks and the Willamette. Franklin Lewis has the story in the Emerald The city’s very transparent planning website has the proposal details at http://pdd.eugene-or.gov/LandUse/ApplicationDetails?file=WG-18-0002

The city planning office notes:

… Once the application is received, the City will have 30 days to determine whether it is complete. If it is not complete, the applicant can either submit the missing information/materials within 180 days, or tell the City to deem it complete based on what they already provided. Once the application is deemed complete, we will prepare public notice and the public involvement period will begin.

Conditional Use Permits follow a type III review process and will include a public hearing. You can see the basic event flow for this type of review here. Also, this CUP review will be based on meeting the approval criteria specifically for the Riverfront Park Special Area Zone (found at Eugene Code 9.3725). The most effective testimony makes a clear case as to how a project does or does not meet the applicable criteria for approval.

You can get updates by emailing GIOELLO Nick R <Nick.R.Gioello@ci.eugene.or.us> and asking to be added to be added to the list of interested parties.

2/14/2018: Campus planning wins award for euphemism of the month

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