DIGGING DEEPER

Strong Rural Reserves Protect Farms!

If you think your local CSA farms are worth advocating for then now is a crucial time to do it! Please make your voice heard in support of farmland protection in the Metro region. The Urban and Rural Reserves process will decide what land is urban and what land stays rural for the next 40-50 years. If you want to keep local farms in the local region, please participate in one of the Metro Open Houses or take 2 minutes to complete the online survey. THIS SURVEY IS IMPORTANT & YOUR VOICE CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE! These are crucial decisions that will effect the ability of local farms like ours to continue to grow food and we want to make sure our collective voice is heard…

1. Protect Farmland! Farms provide food, environmental services, food, and they’re an important economic driver in the region and did I mention that they also provide food. Washington County has the some of the highest quality agricultural land in the region and they should be encouraged to protect that farmland from urbanization. 

2. Development outside the UGB is too expensive!  We do not have the resources to maintain our infrastructure inside the UGB. Any expansion would pull resources away from the centers, and burden taxpayers with additional costs as well.

3. We want Great Communities! People love our neighborhoods because they have character, coffee shops, parks, pubs, shopping, schools, libraries and light rail all within in waking or biking distance. Let’s look inside the UGB and make all our communities into Great Communities.

When you take the online survey be prepared to answer questions like…

Applying the urban reserve factors, are there specific changes that you believe should be made to the candidate urban reserve area maps? Yes, Washington County candidate urban reserve areas are too large. Very little land within their current UGB is developed at urban densities that make efficient use of existing infrastructure. Nor does the current pattern of development in Washington Co fit any of the other factors that must be considered for urban reserve designation. What suggests that the giant tracts of urban reserve candidate areas would be developed any differently? 

Is there an area you believe should be excluded from further study as an urban reserve? Yes, Washington County candidate areas are too large. See above.

In applying the rural reserve factors, are there specific changes that you believe should be made to the candidate rural reserve area maps?  I support Factor 4.  It is important to protect land designated as “Foundation Land” by the Oregon Department of Agriculture within the rural reserves. In addition, I would like to see the following Natural Features protected within the Rural Reserves:

  • Clackamas Bluff and Deep Creek Watershed
  • Mollala River corridor and floodplain
  • Willamette Narrows and Canemah Bluff
  • Johnson Creek Watershed in rural Clackamas County

Is there an area that you believe should be excluded from further study as a rural reserve area? No.

How can Metro and its government partners improve future public involvement efforts? Encourage Washington Co to have public citizens on their advisory committee. 

When asked (towards the end of the survey) about priorities for elected officials, rank protecting farm and forest lands and natural features high.  Also give redevelopment inside the existing UGB a high score.  Providing land for new communities and jobs outside the UGB should score low

Click here to start the survey

For more info on the Urban & Rural Reserves Process:

Metro Website

1000 Friends of Oregon

Audubon Society