Support Liveable, Vibrant Neighborhoods
Chuck has been on the front lines of making Salem more affordable, vibrant, and livable.
As Mayor, he has helped spearhead one of the most comprehensive “Housing First” programs in the state, putting housing in reach for vulnerable populations. He has pushed for partnerships with state and local governments to address the homelessness crisis. He also has a record of advocacy for ensuring our infrustructure is expanded and updated, so residence dont’ have to sit in unnecessary traffic, which produces harmful emissions.
Chuck Bennett has introduced successful initiatives to improve State Street between 12th and 25th, create train horn quiet zones on the Union Pacific and Portland & Western railroads, open the city library on Sundays and complete an environmental analysis of the Salem Preferred Alternative proposal for a new Willamette River bridge.
Downtown vitality depends in part on keeping the character of the core with appropriate redevelopment of historic buildings; more housing opportunities; an entertainment district; better traffic pattern with a two-way grid, and improved streetscape to encourage more pedestrian and bicycle use there. The city has a role in all these elements.
Chuck also knows that Salem’s commercial activity extends beyond downtown. It includes South Commercial, Lancaster, Portland Road and Wallace/Edgewater. He’s been a strong supporter of mixed use development that includes commercial, retail and residential in neighborhoods throughout the city. He worked extensively on the city’s new Mixed Use Zone.
Chuck has been active in planning for more affordable housing, multi-family units and new codes allowing in-fill and auxiliary units on existing lots (often called mother- in-law units).
Chuck strongly supports city, county and state programs for the homeless. While Salem cannot solve this problem alone, it must participate in meeting the challenges homelessness poses.
Chuck is a longtime supporter of the city’s neighborhood association program and several years has chaired the quarterly meeting of the chairs of the 19 neighborhood associations. The experience gives him a unique understanding of the city-wide issues residents are discussing and working to resolve. As a city councilor, Chuck has been praised by the neighborhood associations he has represented over the years – Grant, Lansing, Downtown, NESCA, North East Neighbors, West Salem, Highland and North Lancaster – for his regular attendance at their meetings and willingness to go to bat for them on city response to neighborhood issues.