Ames City Council Jan. 27 meeting


Brian Mozey/Iowa State Daily

City Manager Steven Schainker listens to other council members on the discussion of transportation in the city of Ames on Jan. 27. 

Katie Titus

The Ames City Council motioned to support a city-wide screening evaluation of areas open to development as developers begin to show interest in Ames at the Jan. 27 meeting.

Kelly Diekmann, director of planning and housing, brought forward a matrix of 10 sites for potential development in the Ames area. The sites were based on a density scale, ranking high, average and low.

Matrix locations included central and downtown Ames, Ontario Street, West Lincoln Way, southwest Ames, Mortenson Road and south Ames.

One issue the council was concerned with was the location of the developments to CyRide. High density locations are one-eighth of a mile from a bus stop, average locations are a quarter of a mile from a stop and low density locations are more than a qauarter of a mile away from a bus stop.

Diekmann said CyRide was a part of the discussion in determining what residential high-density housing would be. The city didn’t look at which buses would go to these areas, but how many stops along the way.

“If we added hundreds and hundreds of more riders, that would be an issue,” Diekmann said.

Locations having a high density are 3rd Street Highway Oriented Concentration, zone site in the central Ames area, North Dakota in the West Lincoln Way area and the research park location in south Ames.

Site 10 shows there will not be a bus route within the quarter-mile area to the location.

“CyRide is really in danger,” said Council member Tim Gartin. “We have to be really cautious of CyRide. Before, the housing structures drove CyRide, but adding additional lines would be a hardship.”

Council member Matt Goodman made CyRide a part of the discussion in numerous items on the council agenda. Goodman sits on the CyRide Board of Trustees.

One idea Diekmann said the city has not thought about is putting some of these residential high-density buildings just outside of Ames.

“If the city wanted to build a transit route, we would support that and make it work,” Diekmann said. “There are going to be some places that are never going to have transit access. If you are not on a bus route, you cannot expect a developer to come in and plan and develop a bus route.”

Developers interested in taking on a project in Ames can look at the matrix to help find a location to develop.

The council continued a discussion from the council meeting Jan. 13 concerning a flood mitigation project. The Capital Improvements Plan showed that the project starts in 2015 and will end in 2020.

Tracy Warner, a municipal engineer for Ames public works, brought a plan to the board of building a bridge on Grand Ave. to make it easier for Ames citizens to avoid flooded streets.

“The goal is to get the water away from Ames and farther downstream,“ Warner said. “The bridge on Grand Ave. is going to need to be bigger unless there is a solution to get water away from Ames.”

The bridge on Grand Ave. will be located outside of the 2,000-foot floodplain.

The Ames City Council passed the first of three votes for concrete pavement improvements for Hayward Ave., West St. and Woodland St. and 24th street and Bloomington Road.

More information can be found on the City of Ames website, as well as information on concrete pavement improvements in the Ames community.