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Cedar Mill News
Volume 6, Issue 6


June 2008

Urbanization Forum June 19

The second session of Washington County’s Urbanization Forum will take place on Thursday, June 19 from 6:30-10 PM in the Walters Civic Center, SE 5th and Main in Hillsboro. Unlike the first session, this time there will be a chance for public comments, says Forum organizer Mark Cushing. “We’ll probably ask that the public submit their questions in writing at the beginning of the meeting,” he says. “And we’ll definitely be seeking public comments once we have some proposals to look at.”

The first Forum, held on April 24, framed the discussion, and gave representatives from the county governments and service agencies a chance to state their understanding of the problems surrounding how the county will accommodate growth and how to govern existing urbanized unincorporated areas (UUAs).

The issue can be separated into two questions: what to do with areas currently outside the Urban Growth Boundary (UGB) that will be slated for expansion at the conclusion of the Urban/Rural Reserve study; and what to do with areas that are already inside the UGB, much of which is already urbanized.

The June 19 session and the one following it are going to focus on the simpler of the two questions: how to handle areas that become designated as Urban Reserves, eventually to join the UGB. There is general agreement that they should be annexed to a nearby city when they are brought in. Metro and Washington County are learning their lessons from the 2002 UGB additions of Bull Mountain,  Bethany and Bonny Slope.

After that issue is laid to rest, the thorny problems of how to govern the UUAs will be on the table. It is critical to determine the absolute needs that are non-negotiable and the relative needs that can be selectively met. Cushing expects that it will take several all-day sessions to define these needs and issues surrounding them. “First we need to figure out what are the non-issues, such as areas that absolutely do not want annexation,” he says. “There is a consensus that we need to take an area-by-area approach. For example, Cedar Mill, Cedar Hills and West Slope may be in a common category.”




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Publisher/Editor:Virginia Bruce
12110 NW West Rd
Portland, OR 97229