Why is there so little handicapped parking in the Poplar Shopping Center? I know this is inside Medford city limits, but I seem to be getting ignored. There is one spot near Joanne's, one by Guadalajara and not much else on that side of the center. Surely this can't meet the minimum requirement.
— Bonnie W.
Bonnie, this was a city of Medford question, and a planning one at that. My involvement is usually at the legal end, which is enforcing the spots once they're in there.
For someone who knows about the front end, assigning spaces, I forwarded your question to folks at City Hall.
Here is the response from Senior Planner Kelly Akin:
"Ms. W., I'm responding to your question about handicap parking at the Poplar Shopping Center. The center was developed in the early 1980s and met the accessibility requirements at the time. As the center has been redeveloped (Best Buy, for example), related parking has been improved to meet the current Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements.
"The city cannot require improvements unless there is some trigger, such as the improvements to the Best Buy store. The ADA requires building owners to provide reasonable accommodations for the disabled when requested, and if denied such accommodation, a complaint may be filed with the U.S. Justice Department. I hope your question has been answered. If you need additional information, please let me know. Thanks!"
Dace Cochran, a patrol sergeant with the Jackson County Sheriff's Department, writes a regular Q&A column on police issues for the Mail Tribune. Have a question for him? Write to Mail Tribune Newsroom, P.O. Box 1108, Medford, OR 97501, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.