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Final draft of N. Clackamas park plan ready for board review

Consultants say public showing keen interest in environmental issues
by: Photo courtesy of Alta Planning and Design, To view a larger version of the proposed plan, please visit http://www.altaplanning.com/ncp/

The final draft of the North Clackamas Community Park Concept Plan has been completed after eight months, and will be presented to the North Clackamas Parks and Recreation District Advisory Board later this month for approval.

The months-long process involved community input through phone calls, the mail, comment cards and a stewardship committee.

'What interested me the most is the public's care for environmental issues,' said Mike Rose, a project consultant with Alta Planning and Design.

The park comprises 45 acres with the adjacent baseball park and includes a dog run, which Michelle Healey, the project leader, said required some compromising.

'The dog run was a challenge - there's a strong group of neighbors who want to keep it, but we're also concened about our neighbors as well.'

The dog run will stay about the same size and take up the same space as it currently does, but will be separated off better with new trees.

Rose said the development team focused largely on environmental preservation with the rest of the park, delineating two protected wildlife areas and instituting measures to try to revamp the diminished stream.

To do that, he said the county would remove the culverts that had collapsed into the stream and replace them with bridges, freeing it for fish movement, and restore trees. Shade, he said, lowers water temperatures and makes the stream more suitable for the fish.

'That all aids in the restoration and the overall health of the creek,' he said.

The creek and sensitive areas will also be blocked off by a fence, not so much to actually keep people out, but to signal to them that they shouldn't be down there.

Rose also said he was surprised to learn that in spite of the other concern for the environment, patrons wanted a paved walkway rather than something more porous.

But overall, Rose said he's excited about the project, especially with the nearby community centers.

'In this case, because there is a walking program at the senior center, we think it will be really successful.

Healey said funding options hadn't been looked into much yet.

She said the county will use Metro local share funds, and 'other than that we'll have to do some grant writing and look at our budgets and see where we can come up with funds.'