Feds don't step in to save old-growth trees, historic buildings at controversial 72-home development

In a final memoradum of agreement released this week, U.S. Corps of Engineers officials have mandated that housing subdivision developer Lennar Northwest pay a total of $200,000 for the destruction of all historic buildings and groves of trees on more than 16 acres in Jennings Lodge.

PHOTO BY: RAYMOND RENDLEMAN - Clackamas Fire took part in a regional training exercise at the former evangelical campground in Jennings Lodge. The buildings there have been used as a training ground lately due to the property owners expectation that the buildings and trees will be razed to make way for a 72-lot subdivision.Lennar initially proposed donating $3,000 to local historical societies after documenting the area to be destroyed. The amount Lennar will have to pay in order to make way for a 72-lot housing subdivision is slightly higher than the $150,000 SUBMITTED PHOTO - Jenning Lodge's Friesen Chapel is pictured in winter 1949.initially proposed by the Corps, but not enough to cover the costs of moving and renovating the historic Friesen Chapel, so anyone interested in saving the Chapel would need to come up with additional funds.

As previously reported Lennar set a high price for turning the area into a park, many times what the developer paid for the property in 2014. North Clackamas Parks and Recreation District officials told the developer of the proposed 72-home subdivision at the former evangelical campground that $300,000 per empty lot is too much to pay to acquire parkland.

Last year, officials from the Corps had given hope to Jennings Lodge residents for saving trees at the site by identifying them as one of the aspects of the project to be "mitigated."

Representatives from the local Jennings Lodge Community Planning Organization and Oak Lodge History Detectives, along with a national preservation organization, had tried to save the 17 historic buildings and more than 320 trees, with some of the tallest Douglas firs likely 200 years old.

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