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Starting to shape future of Hwy. 43

A vision workshop on Monday night at the Sunset Fire Hall launched the first of three planning phases to develop a long-term conceptual vision of the Highway 43-Willamette Falls Drive corridor. A handful of community members voiced their ideas, which will be considered at a Sept. 29 meeting at Rosemont Ridge Middle School.

The Highway 43-Willamette Falls Drive corridor is the stretch of land between the Willamette River and the ridgeline above the highway, which extends from the Tualatin River to West Linn's northern city limits. The need for a development plan is a result of West Linn's population growth, housing needs, traffic congestion and mass transit possibilities.

'Cities change, and what the city council wants is a community plan that would encourage the kind of development they want, and discourage things they don't want,' said John Sonnen, West Linn's planning director.

The first phase of the planning process is to hear the community's ideas. The second phase would refine those ideas through more in-depth community engagement, and the final third phase would implement the refined vision and curtail it to fit the city ordinances with amendments to the city's comprehensive plan and possible zoning ordinances and design guidelines.

'We're just at the beginnings of the first phase, so we're just trying to find out the problems the community would like to see addressed and what their long-term aspirations for the future of the corridor are,' Sonnen said.