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Central Oregon LandWatch Discusses UGB

BEND, OR -- Central Oregon LandWatch is raising concerns with Bend's Urban Growth Boundary expansion process. The UGB expansion is supposed to create more available land for housing and transit, as the city prepares for an estimated 40 percent growth in population over the next 15 years. 


Paul Dewey with Central Oregon LandWatch tells KBND the city needs to be careful where it expands. "I think the city has made progress with its current UGB process. The one nagging problem, though, for the city – and I've seen it for the past 20 years – is the failure to take into account existing residences. The focus seems to be more on accommodating new developments than it is on protecting existing neighborhoods." 


He adds, "One proposal the city has, which we do very much support, is called the Central Area Plan. Essentially, that area between 3rd Street and the railroad tracks, which is relatively undeveloped now and might see affordable housing being built."


Dewey is concerned about the cost to current citizens. Central Oregon LandWatch will host a UGB discussion Wednesday evening, including a presentation by expert Eban Fodor.


"He will explain the assumptions behind the idea that all growth is good,” Dewey says. “Because his research has shown that the cost of growth disproportionately falls on those with fixed incomes and taxpayers.”


City Manager Eric King says Bend officials are looking at all aspects of the expansion with multiple task forces and studies.

Wednesday's meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. at Bend's Old Stone Church

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