The Willamette Falls Heritage Area Coalition seeks public input on the draft of its feasibility study for the proposed Willamette Falls National Heritage Area.
The Coalition is working to become a National Heritage Area in order to protect, enhance, share and enjoy the region that stretches along the Willamette River from the mouth of the Clackamas River to the mouth of the Tualatin River. The proposed area incorporates significant portions of West Linn and Oregon City in and around Willamette Falls.
The area is important to the American national story because it was the center of United States western expansion in the 19th century. It continues to be a unique and compelling place filled with cultural, recreational, and economic opportunity that can be supported through the establishment of a National Heritage Area, a locally managed, non-regulatory arm of the National Park Service.
The Coalition is a partnership between the city of West Linn, the city of Oregon City, Clackamas County and the Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde, as well as diverse nonprofit organizations and private sector companies in the region. Coalition President, former Oregon City Mayor Alice Norris, noted that 'this feasibility study represents the highest level of regional collaboration I've seen during my many years of community service in the region.'
Once the review period ends, the Coalition will incorporate feedback and present the finalized study to the U.S. Congress for official designation. When approved, the Willamette Falls National Heritage Area will be the first National Heritage Area in the Pacific Northwest.
'It's about time we had a National Heritage Area in the West,' added Coalition Vice-President, West Linn City Councilor Jody Carson.
The feasibility study will be available for public review through June 30. Hardcopies are available in the reference section at the Oregon City Library, West Linn Library, Gladstone Library, Sunnyside Library, and Oak Lodge Library during regular library hours. The study is also accessible online for comment at the Coalition's website wfheritage.org.