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Staff members added to city planning and community development departments.

Estacada City Hall has expanded its community development and city planning departments to better support the growing population.

"Gradually over the past few years, we have been adding staff to needed areas and so, right now, the biggest change is in our community development department," City Manager Melanie Wagner said.

A recent graduate of the Urban and Regional Planning program at Portland State University, Allan Wilson joined the team in late June as a city planner. An additional city planner is expected to join the staff in August.

"There will be three planners in Estacada, which I think is a first," Wilson said. "I think for a long time it was just one planner."

The growing City Hall staff, especially in city planning, should be no surprise to those who've been paying attention. The population of Estacada has been growing every year, surpassing 5,000 residents in December 2021. In 2010, Estacada's population was 2,730 residents.

Four weeks into the job, Wilson already has noticed the community's passion for being involved in the city's development.

"It's cool to see how many residents are really engaging with us and care about the community and really realize that they have a voice and they have a stake in what happens with these developments," Wilson said.

In addition to Wilson, Mara Enciu Garrett was hired as the community development coordinator for Estacada, a role that includes being the Main Street manager for the Downtown Estacada district.

COURTESY PHOTO: MARA ENCIU GARRETT - Mara Enicu Garrett was appointed as the new community development coordinator in Estacada.

Taylor Campi, who worked as the city planning manager, was promoted to community development director.

Beyond staffing changes, the City Hall building is undergoing structural renovation, with a wall being knocked out to make room for more staff members.

We are "definitely experiencing some growth, and everybody has stayed pretty busy around here," Wagner said. "But once we all kind of get settled in with the new person starting, we'll be handling the workload better, I think."


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