Council approves Frog Pond West Master Plan
After months of planning, the Wilsonville City Council saw the Frog Pond West Master Plan finally come to fruition Monday, July 17, giving approval after a second reading. The plan will provide the template for residential development of the underdeveloped 181-acre area west of Stafford Road and north of Boeckman Road, which is set to include a mix of single-family housing, parks, recreational trails and a West Linn-Wilsonville School District primary school.
Council approved the plan after staff made four minor tweaks to a draft plan presented during a June 19 meeting. Planning Director Chris Neamtzu said the most notable changes included a provision that developers must utilize one or more of three specific design elements: Alley garage access, placement of the garage and driveway on the side street not facing the school or public open space for corner lots, or recessing of the garage a minimum of four feet from the front façade of the developed home.
The second significant change was around the orientation of homes in the Frog Pond West neighborhood, which said development must be situated so that the fronts or side of homes face adjacent schools or parks, and that rear yards and fences may "generally" not face the school or parks unless otherwise approved through a waiver process by the Development Review Board.
Mayor Tim Knapp, Councilor Scott Starr and Councilor Susie Stevens all said they were worried that the homes adjacent to the future school — of which there are 18 lots — could potentially turn into a row of backyard fences with homes facing the opposite direction of the school if they can prove a waiver is necessary for their development. Stevens said that particular situation would provide an eyesore while Knapp said he was concerned about the safety such a scenario would cause the school and park.
"If it comes out of the DRB with five, or 10, or 18 houses backed up to public open space then I'm not going to be happy. I'm going to be a hard sell to be convinced that there is no practicable alternative," Knapp said. "I can see a couple houses depending on how the geography lays out and how the streets lay out, but if it comes back that there's this nondescript row of yards, then I think we've failed. I don't want to see that and I'm hopeful that the guidance of the master plan will be sufficient."
Council unanimously approved the plan 3-0, as Councilors Kristen Akervall and Charlotte Lehan were absent due to prior commitments. A sub-element of the City's Comprehensive Plan, the master plan now allows property owners in the area to initiate requests to the DRB and City Council for annexation and development approval.
Garden Acres Road contract
Council also passed a resolution authorizing a contract with HHPR, Inc. for engineering design, acquisition and construction support services associated with the Garden Acres Road Project. That project will reconstruct approximately 2,700 feet of the county road that runs north-south between Ridder Road and Day Road in the Coffee Creek Urban Renewal Area, serving as the primary route to access the future industrial and employment district.
The awarded contract of approximately $485,000 is expected to finish in the spring of 2019. Project Engineering Manager Eric Mende presented the plan outline to Council in the work session ahead of the July 17 meeting, giving some specifics relating to the details of the project. The work will include creating a two-lane section on a three-lane collector, with a revised intersection and traffic signal where Garden Acres Road connects with Ridder Road.
Starr was concerned that there wouldn't be a left-turn only lane at the north end of Garden Acres Road, asking Mende if the project would need to be altered in the near future to accommodate increased traffic and attract potential developers. Mende said there was no need for a left-hand turn lane at the moment, but that one would be added down the line.
"To get from initial build, which is this, to the future buildout, we're just adding asphalt and sidewalk. It doesn't require removing anything," Mende said. "We wanted to minimize future costs and not tear out anything that's relatively new."
Mende added there hadn't been any development interest on the west side of the road, only the east, and that traffic will be limited to those developments. He said that because the project was not all within city limits, finding all of the financing could be difficult toward the end of the project, which is expected to cost more than $4.5 million. The intent is for construction costs to be funded by urban renewal funding, which he said might need be aided by system development funds.
"If we do stay on schedule then we will need a supplemental in the spring, because we don't have enough money to fund a construction contract," Mende said.
Knapp said additional attention will need to be given to the project's funding, but council approved the contract 3-0.
Red light cameras coming
The Boones Ferry Road and S.W. Wilsonville Road intersection near the I-5 interchange has been a heavy topic of debate in recent months due to heavy amounts of traffic during rush hour. The intersection has produced many problems, especially when drivers pull out into the middle of the intersection before their light turns red, blocking the lane to oncoming traffic.
City Manager Bryan Cosgrove told the council that the City was working on getting additional police presence at the area, especially during peak traffic times. He also said he expected a red light camera to be installed in the next couple months.
"Right now we're putting together a request for proposals to send out to known vendors for a red light camera," Cosgrove said. "Once we advertise that and get some bidders we can make a recommendation. At some point we'll need to adopt some findings for why we're putting in that camera and report on that on an annual basis with ODOT.
"We have one officer who was authorized for some overtime as extra patrol down there, a motorcycle officer, and we are also doing some random saturation controls that are tied to a grant that Clackamas County received, so we will be out there enforcing on a random basis."
City accepts grant for seismic retrofitting
Council also approved a resolution that allows the City to enter a grant agreement with the Oregon Infrastructure Finance Authority of the Business Development Department to receive a grant of $251,685 for seismic retrofitting of the Public Works and Police Department building located on S.W. Town Center Loop E.
The grant covers 45 percent of the estimated cost of retrofitting the building, which is estimated to require $559,300 in total. Oregon law requires that all police stations and emergency operations have retrofits in place by 2022, and such retrofits were deemed necessary in Wilsonville
after a Facilities Master Plan was completed in March of 2015.
"When we did a facility condition index for the Public Works Police Building, it was found to be a 0.30, which is a poor rating with high likelihood of potential collapse if there were to be a seismic event," Kerber said. "As part of the Facilities Master Plan, the number one priority was to improve the facilities and accommodations for the police department because we know that we need to make seismic improvements to the building."
Kerber said all seismic retrofits will be internal and that the building will not look any different to the naked eye following renovations. Council unanimously approved the resolution and will next meet Monday, Aug. 7 for a meeting beginning at 7:30 p.m. in Council Chambers.