To: Board of Commissioners, Clackamas County
From: McLoughlin Area Plan Implementation Team (MAP-IT)
Re: Quarterly Report of Activities
Honorable Chair and Commissioners:
Since our last report to you on March 31, our committee has met three times and subcommittees have also met a number of times. Listed below are our items of primary focus during the past three months:
Street Lighting on McLoughlin – We were part of the ceremony on May 10th celebrating the installation of lights on the west side of McLoughlin Blvd., beginning at Park Avenue and stretching just south of Glen Echo, the northern boundary of Gladstone. That part of the project was completed within two weeks or less and the lights are on. The difference this has already made on the boulevard is refreshing. The lights on the east side will require underground boring (to bring power across McLoughlin) as well as installation of new poles, which will require additional time and expense. The community is looking forward to the entire project being finished by early 2018. We appreciate the efforts of Dan Johnson and Wendi Coryell in making this happen.
Development of Design and Development Standards for Park Avenue and McLoughlin Boulevard – In April, we appointed representatives to a Project Management Team from MABA and the CPO’s to work with the Planning Division to prepare a grant proposal to Metro for funding. If the grant is approved, this work will initially focus on the Park Avenue Station area and the commercial zone on McLoughlin Blvd between Park Ave and Courtney Ave. After broad community engagement and adoption, it is hoped that this can serve as a model to establish a number of activity nodes further south along the Boulevard.
Completion of Sidewalk Network on McLoughlin Boulevard – Some of our members are continuing this project, working with ODOT and County staff to identify sources of funding for this important work. County staff met with committee members on June 19th to discuss strategies for funding the local area active transportation plan that MAP-IT has identified, and to help differentiate the community desires in contrast to those required by the funding source(s). Federal funding requires meeting new standards while the community would, in many instances, be satisfied with just having the system being brought up to par. This meeting will help focus the sidewalk infill strategy in the next transportation grant cycles.
Open Space Preservation – The growing economy has increased demand on staff time at the Oak Lodge Water Services District, the County Development Services Department and the North Clackamas Parks & Recreation District; slowing permits for the Boardman Wetland project, resulting in the project being delayed for another year because the in-water work window will be missed this year. This, however, may be beneficial in the long run because it allows NCPRD to fully participate in the project in a timely manner.
Schoolyard Farms continues to provide locally produced organic vegetables to the greater community, as well as hands-on experience for students at the Jennings Lodge and Candy Lane elementary schools, and New Urban High School. A recent donation of mature grape vines and currants by neighbors in Tigard was installed at both farms during the last quarter and appear to be doing well. A donation of raspberries will be planted this next month so the Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) shares will soon begin including seasonal fruit as production is brought forward. The addition of these fruit varieties will provide examples for local gardeners as well as help support the diet of the community and specifically the student population.
SYF held its annual open house on June 3, which was well supported by its sister organizations (CS&WCD, OLWSD, Ecology Outdoors) and was attended by a steady stream of families having a fun time playing games, eating ice cream, and choosing plants for their home gardens.
An employee work group from Mentor Graphics Corporation chose SYF as their community work day partner for 2017 and thus provided approximately 50 volunteers for the morning of June 28. Commissioners were invited to drop in at this event and two were able to make it. The support for this project is very much appreciated.
MAP-IT Work Plan for 2016 –17 (a new work plan for 2017-18 should be adopted soon)
- Work with ODOT, the county, and other agencies to prepare a project and then secure funding to complete the sidewalk network on McLoughlin Boulevard, Courtney Avenue and Johnson Road around the Sabin-Schellenberg centers.
- Work with the Planning Division to identify improvements to current C-3 zoning on McLoughlin Boulevard needed to encourage mixed-use buildings, improve property values and attract investment in community-oriented businesses. This is being realized by the Park Avenue Station Area Development and Design Standards project.
- Work with CPO’s and the Planning Division to identify changes to the Zoning and Development Ordinance to more completely protect and preserve neighborhood character. This is also being realized by the Park Avenue Station Area Development and Design Standards project, which includes a Neighborhood Affordability and Livability Assessment.
- Be an active participant in the advisory group formed to work with Metro to identify “brownfield sites” on or near McLoughlin Boulevard for future clean up.
Listed below are those areas where we believe the County Commission could support one or more of the projects or programs we are studying:
- As mentioned above, much of our work during the next year will be focused on the inclusive engagement process needed for the creation of design and development standards for the Park Avenue Station Area and the surrounding properties. These standards must be adopted by the BCC in order to take effect.
- The Jennings Lodge CPO and Oak Grove Community Council are prioritizing the approved short-term items from the MAP so that a work plan for 2017-18 can be formalized. While there is strong community support for the previous item 1, there are other programs and capital projects that seem to be of interest and dormant subcommittees may be reactivated to address those other priorities. Your support for these initiatives would be appreciated.
- Just prior to our June meeting, the Executive Team of the McLoughlin Area Business Alliance (MABA) gave notice that they were withdrawing from MAP-IT. However, the MABA representative on the project management team for the Park Avenue grant declined to sign the resignation letter, continues to perform in that role, and has confirmed her interest in seeing the grant implemented. Your support of this grant application is appreciated.
Our new leadership team (Terry Gibson, Chair and Joseph Edge, Vice Chair) will be working with you on developing strategies to continue the momentum we have developed since 2012. The new chair is already working with Gary Schmidt to bring new business leaders to the MAP-IT committee so that it can continue to claim broad community representation. Your support has been vital to all of our efforts, and we hope it will continue.
Ed Gronke, ChairTerry Gibson, Vice-Chair