Clackamas County Board takes key step toward finalizing urban and rural reserves


The Clackamas County Board of Commissioners voted Wednesday to approve findings affirming the designation of urban and rural reserves in the metro region. That approval includes an added reference to an intergovernmental agreement (IGA) being worked out between the county, Metro and the cities of West Linn, Tualatin and Lake Oswego.

This approval followed a three-part public hearing on the findings, which began April 12, and continued April 19 and April 26. The action sets the stage for board action on an ordinance to formally affirm the reserves, tentatively scheduled for May 11.

The Metro Council approved the reserve findings on April 13, and Multnomah County is tentatively scheduled to consider findings in May. Washington County’s reserves were settled by the Oregon Legislature in 2014.

The proposed findings were developed in response to a remand from the Oregon Court of Appeals and the Department of Land Conservation and Development regarding the Portland metropolitan area urban and rural reserves decision adopted regionally in 2010.

The specific issue for Clackamas County relates to future transportation infrastructure in the unincorporated Stafford area, which was designated as urban reserve in 2010. The area is generally north of I-205, and surrounded by the cities of West Linn, Tualatin and Lake Oswego.

Commission Chair Jim Bernard said that traffic issues related to I-205 are already a top priority, and that if and when the cities work with the community on concept planning, transportation infrastructure needs within the Stafford area would also be addressed. He noted that concept planning would have to happen before there could be any annexation or urban development.

The May 11 business meeting will be held at 10 a.m. in the Board Hearing Room, fourth floor of the Public Services Building, 2051 Kaen Road in Oregon City. The board is also expected to act on the IGA with Metro and the three cities at the same meeting. The public will have the opportunity to comment at the meeting on both the remand and on the IGA.

The findings proposed for adoption, as well as additional background information, are available online for review.

For more information, members of the media and public may contact Martha Fritzie at 503-742-4529.