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Potholes fill Sunnyside Heights
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McMinnville Mayor Jimmy Haley calls the condition of Sunnyside Heights “an embarrassment.” Yet he says McMinnville’s Public Works Department is powerless to repair the many deep potholes in that street because the city doesn’t own the property.
“It’s not a street. It’s basically a driveway,” said Haley. “It’s an embarrassment, but it’s not a city street. It’s owned by the seven or eight property owners who have businesses there.”
The condition of Sunnyside Heights has been an issue for over a decade. The road is in terrible shape, but the property owners have not fixed it.
In an effort to remedy the situation, Haley says he’s made an effort to contact the property owners and offer them a solution. If they are willing to donate the property to the city, the city will then be responsible for its upkeep.
“I would love to take care of this because it looks bad,” said Haley. “One thing those property owners can do is they can collectively hire a surveyor with the intent to give the property to the city. When the survey is done, they can ask the city to take it over. One thing that makes it a little complicated is that it borders a state highway, but it’s still something that can be done.”
Haley said the portion of Sunnyside Heights in front of the motel was recently paved during the most recent round of city paving in the fall. Haley said that’s because the motel owners had given the property to the city several years ago.
“We had several people over there ask why we were stopping the paving in front of the motel,” said Haley. “It’s because that’s all the property we own. I think it’s going to take one of the property owners to get behind this and really give it a push for this to happen. If we get one spot here and one spot there, we’re not going to pave in little patches. It’s going to take all of them.”
If the property owners aren’t willing to give their property to the city, Haley says another option would be for them to hire a paver and have the street repaired themselves.