Road work and traffic take away from neighborhood atmosphere

     You always want what you don’t have. Not everything can be exactly how you want it to be. But when it comes to the place where you live, you will always have what made you want to live there as well as room for improvement.

For the residents and commercial citizens of the Jefferson Westside Neighborhood, they are no exception. Their neighborhood, like most in the greater Eugene area, is experiencing change for the better and for the worst.

“Parking is a pain in the butt, it’s never enough,” said Karen Davis, an employee at Ceramic Tile Supply Northwest.

   What the people of the Jefferson Westside like the most is the location. Conveniently located between 7th and 18th avenues, the area is bustling with traffic, business and places to dine.  Hien Williams, store owner of The Graphics Shop, has been at his location now for the past four years.

“The location is peaceful, there is no real crime and we get at least 30,000 cars passing us each day,” said Williams.

Heather Carrell of Oregon Family Dental agrees. “The traffic for our office is good,” said Carrell, “The location allows for lots of foot traffic too.”

“There are a lot of places to eat and its close to downtown,” claims Mac Chase, a graphic designer at Signs Now. Chase lives close to work and the downtown. “I love the Whitaker,” jokes Chase.

While the Jefferson Westside has a lot to be proud of, the number of problems or areas for improvement outweighs the positive.

Davis could only think of things she could see improved. “We’re on a very busy street with lots of dumpster crashers and hookers walking by,” said Davis. On some Saturday nights when she closes the store, she has felt uncomfortable. “There are a lot of vagrants at night. I have felt unsafe, but we have had no break-ins and only a little graffiti,” explains Davis.

While Williams has no real complaints about his graphics shop location, Oregon Family Dental’s Carrell says there a lot more transients, vandalism and a filled parking lot late at night. The two businesses share the same city block at 11th and Chambers.

Chase sees the hardships brought on by the recent recession. “I would like to see more businesses coming back,” said Chase, “There are lots of empty buildings.” When asked what could be done to aid those businesses, Chase simply responded, “No EmX.”

Even though there is a lot of construction, resurfacing and heavy flows of traffic, the Jefferson Westside Neighborhood businesses that are standing had no complaints about slow business.  If anything, Williams would want to be “closer to the university.”

About kadupont

Journalism student at the University of Oregon.
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