Community looks to next year with 20/20 vision
A new decade is just around the corner, and there is much in the works for the next 12 months. From established traditions to new projects, 2020 will be an eventful year in Estacada.
Several residents will see exciting accomplishments this year. Peter Hamer will have a book of poetry published in May, and Clackamas Valley Baptist Church Pastor Wally McDermed will graduate from a pastoral training program called Convergence.
Many people are eagerly awaiting summertime events. Assistant to the city manager Melanie Wagner cited the annual Fourth of July parade as one of her favorite occurrences.
"I love all the support from the community to either be in the parade, volunteer to help with the parade, or to come out and watch it before they go on to the Timber Festival or their other festivities. I think it is a great celebration of our independence and freedom and really brings the community together," she said.
Multiple community members are eagerly awaiting the Summer Celebration.
"So many good things happening! I always look forward to Summer Celebration," said Debra Bufton, executive director of the Estacada Area Food Bank.
"I always look forward to the local summer events that happen in Estacada like the Fourth of July Parade, Summer Celebration, Timber Festival, Uncorked (and) Concert in the Park," said McDermed.
Several city projects are on people's minds, including an update to the local zoning regulations. The update is expected to be finished by the spring and will be considered by the Planning Commission and City Council. Work on the project this year involved research and data collection, advising with a group of local stakeholders and residents and a community survey.
"The new zones are meant to allow for new development that supports the community's vision for economic development and healthy growth — including multi-family housing along the 30 bus route, neighborhood-oriented commercial, and a mix of uses at the mill site that preclude the possibility of a new heavy industrial use that might be a nuisance to the neighboring library, housing, and parks," said Estacada Economic Manager Matt Lorenzen. "I am excited to see how property owners and builders are able to envision these new zones in ways that align with the desires of residents, landowners and business owners."
"(I) am excited to have come on board with the city in time to help implement whichever of these changes get adopted," added Taylor Campi, Estacada's city planner.
Wagner also mentioned the city's application for a grant to improve the intersection at Northeast Sixth Avenue and Northeast Main Street.
"This crosswalk gets a lot of use and it currently is more than 80 feet wide! If we get the grant, we will be able to reduce the crossing to less than 50 feet. This is the second time we have applied for a grant to do this project, so hopefully it will work out," Wagner said.
Bufton added that she is also excited about the work on the next phase of Wade Creek Park, will include an outdoor amphitheater, a community room, picnic shelter, new trails, exercise features and a restored stream.
McDermed is also looking forward to the new housing developments in town and the influence that they will have.
"I'm excited to see how this will impact the local housing needs and how the community will respond to the need for low income housing and the critical need for increasing elderly housing and care facilities," he said. "I'm excited to see our own church events growing and reaching new people through our monthly free breakfast, the "Back-to-School-Blast" that helps with providing school supplies to children, Vacation Bible School (and) Grief Share."
"The year 2020 is fitting as we look forward with 20/20 vision to try and meet the needs of folks in this community and celebrate living in Estacada," he added.
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