Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Streetcar Consultant GB Arrington Set to Address Council Work Session Tonight - Updated

Updated 4X: The Standard-Examiner has the last word

Here's a quick heads up for Ogden Streetcar proponents. Although the Council/RDA Board are mainly preoccupied by budget preparation business this evening, there's a streetcar-related item on the Council work session agenda in which you might want to sit in. On May 4 we reported that the Council had retained the services of PB PlaceMaking, Inc. consultant GB Arrington, who will be working to "marry what the city is trying to do with what UTA has already done," in order to get the Godfrey-hijacked streetcar planning process back on track. According to the work session Council packet displayed below, Mr. Arrington will be back before the Council this evening, for the purpose of discussing Ogden Streetcar options:
We'll leave the lights on of course, for anyone who'd like to check in here with the play-by-play of tonight's work session.

Update 6/8/11 8:00 a.m.: For a good, concise report on last night's work session, and a rundown of new developments since last fall, don't miss Dan's writeup, in the comment section below. In addition, Mr. Schwebke also provides his own post-meeting story on the SE site:
Update 6/8/11 2:22 p.m.: Just when we thought this story was all tapped out... we now find Dan S. reporting from today's so-called "stakeholders meeting at WSU":

Great remark from WSU's Norm Tarbox:

"Most of the stakeholders around this table (he says) don't matter. All that matters is Ogden City and UDOT. Until those two get on the same page, the rest of us might as well not even be here."

Click the below comments link to listen in...

Update 6/8/11 7:26 p.m.: Thanks to the sharp eyes of Gentle Reader Dan S., we now learn that the Salt Lake Tribune's Cathy McKitrick is all over this story, too:
Councilwoman Wicks hits the nail squarely on the head with this savvy quote, wethinks:

"I haven’t heard a single citizen supporting the 36th Street alignment," said Councilwoman Amy Wicks. "I’ve had people from all walks of life who never agree on anything come forward and say 25th Street, down Harrison or not at all."
Our compliments to Ms. McKitrick for the great writeup, and to Ms. Wicks for telling it like it is.

Update 6/9/11 7:42 a.m.: This morning's Standard-Examiner reports on the outcome of yesterday's meeting, where Ogden Streetcar stakeholders "put the brakes on a proposed $156 million streetcar system Wednesday so a city council consultant can review a study associated with the project":
Fascinating political study on how relatively easy it was for Boss Godfrey and his fellow 36th Street corridor "gondola" proponents to derail the more logical 25th Street route, and contrarily, how relatively difficult (and expensive) it was for our Ogden City Council to get the project back even somewhat on track.


Dan S. said...

The work session was quite interesting. The new developments since last fall appear to be as follows:

* The city council has agreed unanimously that it favors the 25th Street alignment for the streetcar.

* Frustrated with UTA and its consultant, the council has hired its own consultant (G. B. Arrington) to bring an additional perspective to the issues.

* Mr. Arrington has made it clear that if economic development is to be a goal of this project, then UTA's work is not adequate and significant further planning and analysis will be necessary. This would include new zoning regulations to facilitate transit-oriented development.

* Mayor Godfrey seems determined to kill the whole project. He dominated the discussion last night, in his usual argumentative tone, distorting many of the facts and hammering mostly on the idea that the cost makes this project impossible. This was quite a role reversal for him, playing the naysayer while others were trying to be the visionaries. But he has a valid point about the cost, and it's clear that we either need to reduce the cost back to the $100 million range, or identify some significant new funding source.

rudizink said...

I got a good chuckle over UTA bureaucrat Gerry Carpenter's weasly statement, "We've done a lot of work. If the money that's been spent is essentially wasted, there would be some disappointment."

Carpenter and the rest of these out of touch Salt Lake City Transportation Bureaucrats should be down on their knees begging the foregiveness of the "true" stakeholders in the proposed Streetcar System for the complete waste of $700K in Alternatives analysis funds  - The Ogden City taxpayer stakeholders, that is - the same stakeholders whose central city corridor preferences have been entirely ignored by the Utah ivory-tower elitist central-planning types from the get-go. If there's any disappointment to be registered, it should be heaped upon the backs of Mr. Carpenter, and his fellow Joe Stalin-style UTA aparatchiks... no?

That's my take... and I'm stickin' with it.  And what about it, gentle readers?  Is you blogmeistwer right or wrong about this

Keisha said...

Good point, Rudy!

If you're going in the wrong direction and you stay the course, where, exactly, do you wind up?

Dan S. said...

I'm here at the stakeholders meeting at WSU. The council has presented its proposal to "pause" the study while they undertake a closer look at an alternative on 25th and Harrison. Lots of people are making good points.

Dan S. said...

The attendance here is good, with three council members plus their director and consultant; reporters from S-E and Tribune; various other stakeholders; and quite a few citizens in the peanut gallery, mostly affiliated with the Trolley District group.

Dan S. said...

Norm Tarbox of WSU points out that he's been involved in this process for 7 years now, and it's very frustrating to still not have an answer. Most of the stakeholders around this table (he says) don't matter. All that matters is Ogden City and UDOT. Until those two get on the same page, the rest of us might as well not even be here.

Dan S. said...


Dan S. said...


Dan S. said...

Another tidbit from today's meeting. Mayor Godfrey again tried to argue that there's no point even considering the streetcar proposal at this time because the available funding would cover only about 2/3 of the estimated cost. In response, Mick Crandall (recently retired from UTA and now a consultant still helping with the project) said that if everybody planning transportation projects had quit at this stage in the process just because all the funding wasn't in place, we'd all be walking.

Dan S. said...

I know this is a rather one-sided discussion thread, but here's another observation. Arrington at one point remarked that the elephant in the bedroom is what happens to Harrison. But there was another elephant in the bedroom that was hardly mentioned at all. In seven months Ogden will have a new mayor. Yesterday the various stakeholders kept asking the city council how long a "pause" they wanted, and no precise answer was forthcoming. But surely the answer is "at least seven months".

The Lovely Jennifer said...

That's what I would have said ... no fear:  first of the year ...


Ozboy said...

"In seven months Ogden will have a new mayor"

Ah Dan, if wishes were fishes we would all catch the limit!

My money is still on Godfrey waffling on his pledge to not run for mayor again when this term is up.  He has very rarely told the truth about anything, why should this "I'm not running" thing be any different?  

I think when we get right down to the filing deadline that he will have a change of heart, assuming he even has a heart, and will proclaim that in response to overwhelming citizen demands he must put his personal preferences aside and answer the call of the public by once again running.

I mean really, where else could Godfrey ever hope to get a job that comes close to paying him what he makes now?   (There is even a raise in the mayor salary after the next term).
With his long and sorry history of one grand money losing scheme after another, who in the private sector would really hire  him?  And to do what - throw large amounts of money at losing ideas - his specialty?

rudizink said...

"I know this is a rather one-sided discussion thread..." 

Kudos to you for keeping us up on the breaking news, Dan!  You've been thorough enough that I doubt that even our most opinionated readers have been tempted to chime in.

Danny said...

.... seven months.... seven months and counting until not more Godfrey.  So close ..... so wonderful .....

Zebzed said...

"...Joe Stalin-style UTA aparatchiks... no? "

No.  Not even close.
The reason no one is on "..the bandwagon.." is because your bandwagon is poorly manufactured and squeeky-sad.

Dan is right.  One sided, when the side is you,  is pretty silly.

rudizink said...

Hate to break the bad news, Danny.  There's a persistent rumor circulating around town that if Godfrey sockpuppet Councilman Stephenson is somehow elected  to the Emerald City Mayoral post, he'll immediately appoint Godfrey to John Patterson's soon to be vacated Ogden CAO post, the highest-paid job in Emerald City.

Check out braindead Councilman Stephenson's slick new campaign website, BTW.  As an website I'm wonderio:

And one other thing... our impeccable WCF sources reveal that John Patterson may decide to "ditch" his Ogden City COA job, now that he's on the "short list"  for city manager candidates  for  West Jordan City... which will leave an opening for Godfrey as the  NEW Ogden CAO, of course.

Which brings us all back  to the "Godfrey Moron, YES??????

Biker Babe said...

think I've said this before:  for a model of how this works, look at the leadership in Russia ... Where is Putin and who is Really running Russia?


DoctorOpposite said...

Here's my take, Rudi.  Let Boss Godfrey stick his 12 years as Ogden's MAyor Up his Bottom!!!

We caqn't rid ourselves of the little shite fast enough!

Danny said...

Isn't West Jordan where Patterson came from, after being fired there for his sex scandal?  Or was it West Valley?

Yes, I've heard the rumors that Brandon Stephenson won't be able to stand up once Godfrey pulls his hand out of Brandon's "sock", and so therefore he would make Godfrey the CAO or some such thing.  After all, it's probably the only job Godfrey could get.

And I see that Brandon's website is virtually nothing but Godfrey cheerleading.

So yeah, that's a given.

But there are other candidates.  I suppose the Godfrey crony money is going to Brandon.  But having Godfrey out as mayor is a plus no matter what else happens.  He's just that bad.

rudizink said...

West Valley City is where Patterson had his earlier problems.

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