A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

Zoning: Neighbors get another shot

Written June 10th, 2015 by Hasso Hering
The property at issue in the Waverly Drive rezoning request.

The property at issue in the Waverly Drive rezoning request.

Residents of the neighborhood near the 200 block of Southeast Waverly Drive in Albany will get another chance to speak out on a zone change that would allow apartments to be built on a wooded parcel of about 1.4 acres.

The council held a public hearing on the zone change for 241 Waverly S.E. two weeks ago, but only the next-door neighbor, Kasey Tegner, testified against it. She said others likely would have spoken if they had known about it. The council could not act on the issue then because of a procedural hurdle and postponed action until Wednesday.

But last night Tegner asked for the hearing to be reopened so several of her neighbors, who were in the audience, could be heard. The council voted to call an entirely new hearing so both the proponent and anyone else can testify. No date was set. Once it is scheduled it will be advertised in the usual way.

The rezoning from single-family residential to multi-family would allow up to 35 apartments immedately next door to the Tegner home. It would also do away with a densely wooded buffer between the residential neighborhood and the commerial zone along Pacific Boulevard, where a car wash, lube business and motel are situated.

At issue is whether a change in the comprehensivbe plan and zoning map should be allowed when they likely would alter the nature of a neighborhood over the objection of residents and property owners. Councilor Dick Olsen said Wednesday he was opposed to the zone change and would have preferred a council vote to turn it down right then rather than have another hearing. But the council went the new-hearing route instead.

Two members, Floyd Collins and Bill Coburn, had not been present for the hearing two weeks ago but now presumably will get a chance to catch up. (hh)

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