Sept 10 2018 Meeting Notes

Meeting Notes
September 10, 2018

Facilitators:  Lisa Reagan & Rev. Judy Lee Hay
Refreshments provided by BASWA / Rose O’Keefe


Discussion notes are “coded” in the following way:
Q = Question
A = Answer
C = Comment
R = Response

1. Introductions

2. Crime Prevention Reports

Genesee Section (Upper Mt. Hope, Lilac/Azalea, South Wedge):

Crime in the last 30 days:

  • No major crimes
  • Unattended purse theft from Elmwood bus shelter
  • Handful of car larcenies, several from unlocked vehicles

Still have a traffic detail on Mt. Hope for 4 hrs/month. During a recent detail on Robinson & Mt. Hope, 5 pp ticketed in one night, with the highest speed clocked at 59 mph.

Q: Can you station someone at Wilson Blvd. & Ford St. intersection where people turn right on red where it is not allowed?
A: Yes, I can ask for some more attention to it.

Goodman Section (Highland Park, Swillburg, Lilac/Azalea, South Wedge):

Officer Tibbitch is the new temporary Crime Prevention Officer for Goodman section. He’s a 25 year veteran including 14 years in the Highland section so he’s very familiar with this area and happy to serve here.

Crime in last 30 days:

  • No significant crime
  • Linden St. burglary of bikes from unlocked garage (a crime of opportunity)

Central Section (South Wedge):

Crime in the last 30 days:

  • No major crimes
  • 4 burglaries, which is fairly low
  • Had seen spike in car larcenies in June & July, especially on Mt. Hope; put extra details there and saw a decline in August

Had some extra overtime this summer so put some foot patrols on South Ave.; neighbors and businesses seemed to appreciate it.

Q: Can you look into the bicycle theft incident on Linden St. that took place in broad daylight while the owner was standing there?
A: Yes, I look into that when I get back to the office.

Q: People are saying that larcenies are supposed to be reported to 311 now, not 911, is that true?
A: Yes, that’s the official policy, but I do intervene and send an officer if I think it warrants it; we keep an eye on the 311 calls coming in.

General RPD Notes/Announcements:

Through the new Community Affairs Bureau under the Office of the Chief, we’re trying to do more community engagement. The “Coffee With a Cop” program is an opportunity for citizens to “pull up a chair, grab a cup of coffee, get to know your local police offers, ask questions, tell us about your neighborhood or share your concerns.” All the fall dates & times for each section can be viewed on the Coffee With a Cop webpage.

The Citizens Academy is starting with a record number of participants. Please consider participating next time around.

3. Neighborhood Service Center Reports – Nancy Johns-Price (SE) & John McMahon (SW)

Nuisance points are back effective Sept 1st. If you have questions about the new guidelines, contact Nancy Johns-Price at

C: There are railroad ties on Gregory near South that are hazardous.
R: Nancy will follow up on that.

C: RG&E construction damage to sidewalks on Mt. Hope Ave have not been fully repaired.
R: John will follow up on that.

4. Erie Harbor Phase II River Way Enhancements – Jeff Mroczek (City of Rochester) & Zakery Steele (Stantec)

About 6-8 years ago, Phase I was completed which included some added access to the river near Ford St. where the Erie Harbor apartments were constructed.

This is Phase II, which has already been funded by a $1.7 M grant from NYS, and recently received additional $2M through Roc the Riverway related funding. Hoping to kick things off as soon as the state funding moves forward with the Roc the Riverway funds.

Have gathered community input at several public meetings, a public survey and a series of Advisory group meetings. The community was offered 3 different design concepts. The common theme was desire for improved access to the river, and to keep the southern end (toward Ford St.) more passive and concentrate the activity on the northern end.

Based on that feedback, the team will come up with a detailed final draft design, then the City will come back for another round of public feedback.

All the design concepts can be viewed on the project webpage. Each design presents different approaches to water access (i.e. landside cove, amphitheater), different active play elements (basketball court, play structures) and where they would be placed, and other design elements.

Q: Is there a plan to work parking in?
A: Yes, we know we need to accommodate that and will work into the final design.

Q: Will there be trail repair including all the way to the section north of 151 Mt. Hope Ave.?
A: Yes, there’s intention to repair any areas that need it and we should certainly be able to do that with the added funding.

Q: Does the Erie Harbor Phase II project include the northern section near Court St?
A: Internally, we call that the Erie Harbor promenade, which is totally separate project and funding.
Q: Will the trail at the promenade be open? It’s been almost a year that it’s been closed.
A: Yes, it will dead end there when the promenade is open, which should be soon. Morgan is responsible for building the connection on the roof of their parking garage, but that will take awhile.
Q: Who do we talk to about the dangerous condition of the trail there now during construction?
A: DES permitting dept, probably Jim Quakenbush.

Q: What kind of boats are being considered?
A: The plan is for a series of boat landings for docking of new tour boat (Corn Hill Landing is planning a boat to replace the Mary Jemison), kayak/canoe/paddle boat rentals, personal motor boats, and potentially water taxis in the future.

C: Would be wonderful to have something like the Water Fire Festival in Providence
R: Those kinds of things are being considered for the larger Roc the Riverway
Initiative and there’s discussion of a management entity that would do programming & events like that.

Q: We’re acting under the Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan, which has been approved by the state; is this Phase II plan constrained by the priorities set forth with neighborhood input in that plan (i.e. emphasis on more passive uses)?
A: Yes, the Phase II plans have to be consistent with that, although the LWRP is a broad based plan. There’s nothing we’re considering that’s inconsistent with it. If you think there are inconsistencies, we’d certainly like to hear your input on that. Dorraine Kirkmeyer’s office is responsible for carrying out the LWRP, so she’s the person you would reach out to with the input.

5. Roc City Skatepark Proposed for River Way in South Wedge – Jim Farr (City of Rochester)

This project has been talked about for at least 10 years and for a variety of reasons, it’s been delayed and pushed off. Roc the Riverway has finally pushed it forward with $1M allocated for the location under the Frederick Douglass/Susan B. Anthony bridge.

This will activate and link between South Wedge and downtown. We’re the only major city without a skatepark, and at 38,000 sq ft, this will become one of the largest skateparks in the Northeast.

We’re moving forward very aggressively and hope to have it ready a year from now for Riverway Romance weekend in 2019. We’re going to council next week to enter into agreement with Stantec to do the final design. They are also the contractor on Erie Harbor Phase II so that will help us connect and coordinate those two projects.

There will be public input meetings probably in the Nov/Dec timeframe. We had done a lot of community input and design renderings along the way, so we have a head start on that.

The city will make an initial capital investment, funds from national foundations have been secured, and we’re looking for some more private dollars to raise the remainder needed for the project.

The City will take care of the capital requirements and maintenance, but will have an MOU with Roc City Skatepark to be the operating entity that will program the space.

We want this to be friendly not only for skaters, but for families and for people that still want to travel through via the river trail.

Q: Where will people park?
A: We’re assuming that the skaters may use the trail to get there and there will be a lot of people coming using alternative modes of transportation, but we will plan a drop off area, and Washington Square Park garage is a block away.

Q: How will this play out acoustically with the quieter water activities planned for the nearby riverfront?
A: I don’t expect the roar of the rubber wheels on the skateboards to be louder than the roar of 490, but there is quite a bit of concrete buffering between the two spaces and the distance between them is about 1/3 of a mile. We’ll see about any landscape buffering we can add in there.

Q: How can people continue to use the trail? Will there be community engagement opportunity for people who currently use the trail?
A: We’re planning to do some trail reworking and repair so there will be a smooth ride for people that want to use the river trail. We are committed to creating a separate commuter trail for people to pass through.

Q: Is the Washington Square Park neighborhood supportive?
A: Yes, they are and have written a letter of support for funding. They’d like to see that area activated with positive activity.

6. Community Sharing

Visit Frederick Douglass Library webpage for details about this program and all the programs and events happening this month at our neighborhood library.

On Sun Sept 23 @ 2:00 there will be a history presentation at Calvary St. Andrews given by Cynthia Houck on the South Wedge, Highland Park & Swillburg.

The Azalea neighborhood is having a potluck on Sun Sept 23 @ 12:30 at the new kids playground in Highland Park.

Highland Park neighborhood’s annual Taste of the Neighborhood is this Sun Sept 16 from 2-5:30pm at Ellwanger Barry Park.

Highland Hospital has submitted their application for a PDD. The monthly meeting with hospital administration is on Thurs Sept 20 @ 5:30 in the Gleason Conferecne room at Highland Hospital. Topics will include the hospital’s strategy for the site, ways to alleviate parking pressure on the neighborhood, patient pickups idling on the street, and the frontage on Mt. Vernon.

NBN6 meetings will be the first Monday for the next several months due to holidays, so meetings will be on Oct 1 & Nov 5. Highland Park neighborhood will provide the refreshments next month.


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