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Harrison Avenue project could get more parking

The city of South Lake Tahoe could be purchasing the Timberlake Inn to help provide parking for the Harrison Avenue beautification project.

The project, which has been in the works since the early 1990s, has been a touchy subject among Harrison Avenue business owners, who are concerned about loss of parking near their businesses.

“A lot of effort for a lot of years has been put into this project, but there is not an agreement on a specific way to go in terms of design,” said associate city planner Lisa O’Daly.



The California Tahoe Conservancy is considering a grant to the city to purchase the property for parking. The theory is that if additional boat ramp parking is available, it will alleviate congestion on Harrison Avenue. If the Timberlake Inn is purchased, it would be torn down and turned into a parking lot.

“The expectation is not that people will be parking (at the Timberlake Inn site) and then go to Harrison, but to provide for an existing demand at the boat ramp,” O’Daly said.



The city and the conservancy will be looking for direction from Harrison Avenue business owners to determine if this would be appealing.

The proposed Harrison Avenue project includes landscaping, bicycle paths that would fill a missing link in the city’s bikepath network and Tahoe Regional Planning Agency mandated water quality improvements.

In an effort to work with business owners, the city is evaluating all parking options.

“The area adjacent to the (Tahoe Daily) Tribune is being considered for development of additional parking, water quality treatment and possibly a picnic area,” O’Daly said.

The Conservancy could provide funds for purchase of the property based on recreational qualifications, and its interest in facilitating the project, which could provide the opportunity to construct bicycle trails.

“From the Conservancy staff perspective, it could be a real catalyst to bring folks together on agreement to the Harrison Avenue improvement plan,” said Bruce Eisner, Conservancy program manager of land acquisition.

If the city and Conservancy decide to purchase the property, the acquisition will have to occur within the next few weeks because of the Timberlake Inn’s option to sell the property for condominium construction.

The Conservancy will present conceptual design plans to Harrison Avenue business owners on Thursday at City Council Chambers, 1900 Lake Tahoe Blvd. The schedule is: Tallac to Modesto at 9 a.m., Alameda to Tallac at 10:30 a.m., San Jose to Alameda at 1 p.m. and Modesto to Los Angeles at 2:30 p.m.


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