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Cedar Mill News
Volume 5, Issue 10


October 2007

Measure 37 in Cedar Mill

By Virginia Bruce, with research assistance from Larry Bates

If you have been thinking that the effects of Measure 37 (M37) are mainly felt in rural areas and don’t affect us here in Cedar Mill, read on. Several local landowners have filed claims that could have a high impact on our community. The measure requires local governments to either waive land-use restrictions on property or compensate owners for the loss of their land’s value that results from restrictions. Although many people who voted for the measure believed that the beneficiaries would be rural landowners who wanted to put up a few houses to pay for their retirement, large corporations have made claims that far outweigh those in both monetary impacts and changes to communities.

The Peterkort family, through its companies J. Peterkort & Company and Peterkort Homestead LLC, has filed nearly $77 million in claims against Washington County and the City of Beaverton. These claims may reflect the value of the approximately 124 acres the companies own around the intersection of Cedar Hills Boulevard and Barnes Road. They seek to waive land use regulations and zoning imposed since 1959. Specifically they wish to ignore traffic issues and the Cedar Hills/Cedar Mill Community Plan that designates the area as “transit-oriented ” because of its proximity to the Sunset Transit Center.

Because the City of Beaverton cited traffic issues and zoning in denying the Wal-Mart application, this could easily mean that Wal-Mart or another big-box, high-traffic retail outlet could be back on the table. Under current zoning and land use regulations, cities and counties can require developers to pay for road improvements needed to handle increased traffic that would result from their developments. Granting a waiver on these properties could mean that any needed road improvements would be paid for by the public, or not built, causing huge increases in congestion.

Another local M37 claim is for the property at the southwest corner of Murray Boulevard and the Sunset Highway. The landowner, Milton O. Brown, wants to erect two huge billboards on land zoned “neighborhood commercial.” After filing the claim, but before Washington County had acted on it, he began to proceed with the installation. Quick action by one of the businesses alerted Oregonian columnist Jerry Boone, and before long the County had issued a stop-work order. The massive tower for one of the billboards still stands there, pending the vote on Measure 49 and further County action.

Shilo Inns owner Mark Hemstreet filed a claim to waive zoning and development codes, particularly design review, landscaping and parking regulations on half an acre of the property at their headquarters on Shilo Lane, near the corner of Cedar Hills Boulevard and Barnes.

Measure 49, on the November ballot, excludes corporations from M37 relief. Passage would end all these claims, while still allowing for much of the homebuilding that voters thought they were approving. Contrary to the information being given out by the opposition, many existing M37 claims that meet M49 requirements can go forward.

More information on Measure 49 can be found at yeson49.com, and at the Oregonians in Action website oia.org. And however you decide to vote, be sure to return your ballot by November 6!



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Published monthly by Cedar Mill Advertising & Design
Publisher/Editor:Virginia Bruce
12110 NW West Rd
Portland, OR 97229