Town casts eyes on streetscaping plan | SierraSun.com

Town casts eyes on streetscaping plan

Erich Sommer

Town officials will hold a series of public meetings over the next four months designed to illicit public input about the potential for new road alignments and streetscapes in downtown Truckee.

The first meeting is Tuesday, May 14 at Town Hall at 6 p.m.

“When everything is said and done, we hope to have an agreed-upon centerline on Donner Pass Road and road widths that will dictate how much area we have,” said Town of Truckee Senior Civil Engineer Pat Perkins.

After Tuesday’s meeting, Perkins said there would be at least two more this summer before a plan would be ready to go before the planning commission and Town Council in late fall.

The first step will be to establish an agreed upon curb-and-gutter line, a centerline for the Donner Pass Road and road widths.

Knowing the area available will allow those at the workshops to determine what combination of sidewalks, gutters, on-street bikeways, landscapes and parking lots they can choose to have in the downtown area.

“Do they want paved sidewalks or no sidewalks at all?” Perkins asked rhetorically. “On Commercial Row, we have about 50 feet (of width). We want to find out what people want in that area.”

There are, however, some constraints, such as a minimum width of Donner Pass Road and Jibboom Street. Those roads must be a certain width because of maintenance issues.

And widening roads generally increases motorist speeds, an undesirable effect in the congested downtown area.

“The wider the streets, the faster people tend to go,” Perkins said.

One of the big issues at the workshops will undoubtedly be parking.

“Wherever sidewalks go, it’s going to affect parking,” Perkins said.

Nowhere will that be more of an issue than on West River Street, where space is already at a premium.

Those and other engineering and planning standards will be addressed during the workshops.

While Perkins said the town expects significant impute from downtown commercial interests, officials hope to receive recommendations from a wide swath of people in the community.

“If you care what downtown looks likes, now is your time to speak up,” Perkins said.

While some developments, like those in Brikletown, are already under way, the streetscape plan will provide more cohesion for the whole area as future developments move forward, he said.

For more information call 530-582-7700.

Jimenez guilty of killing toddler

By Erich Sommer

Albert Jimenez Jr., 29, of Truckee, was convicted on Wednesday in Nevada County Superior Court on charges of second-degree murder, felony child abuse resulting in great bodily injury and assault on a child under eight causing death.

Jimenez was charged in the death of one-year-old Kylie Ann Kirbis-Fernhoff.

He was the boyfriend of the victim’s mother when Nevada County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to a call from a Truckee apartment of a child choking on April 3, 2001.

When NCSO deputies arrived, Jimenez told them that Kirbis-Fernhoff was choking on a cracker and that he tried the Heimlich maneuver, but wasn’t sure if he performed it correctly.

Detectives later determined the injuries were not consistent with information he provided, and Jimenez was arrested and charged shortly after the child passed away at Washoe Medical Center after being taken off life support on April 4, 2001.

After Wednesday’s verdict, Deputy District Attorney Fred Holmes said he hoped the conviction would provide some respite to the family and law enforcement officials who, for over a year, have dealt with what turned out to be a horrific case of child abuse.

“A lot of people in law enforcement in Truckee have been living with this case for over a year, and we are as happy as the family is that the verdict came in the way it did,” Holmes said.

Holmes said that even child abuse medical experts who testified during the trail were surprised at the extent of the abuse.

“Two medical experts that testified said that it was the worst case of child abuse they had ever seen, and one of them had been in the field for over 20 years,” he said.

Assistant District Attorney Ron Wolfson, who argued the case with Holmes, said Jimenez faces 50 years to life.

Defense Attorney John Kennelly represented Jimenez.

Sentencing is set for June 10 by Superior Court Judge Ersel Edwards.

The trail opened on April 25 in Nevada City, with closing arguments last Thursday.

Last August, forensic pathologist Dr. Ellen Clark testified at a preliminary hearing that Kirbis-Fernoff died of physical child abuse that, in her opinion, constituted torture.

Clark performed Kirbis-Fernoff’s autopsy and said it reveled extensive internal and external injuries, including bruises and burns on the skin, severe internal bleeding in the stomach, liver injuries and at least five cracked ribs.

Clark said the abuse had occurred over a period of “at least 10 days, maybe weeks, or even months.”

Jimenez served over two years in prison on a prior conviction of felony child abuse in Sacramento County in 1994.