The year is 2012; water conservation has reduced consumption by 10 percent delaying the need to increase the capacity of the Lake Oswego/Tigard regional water treatment plant. Inflation over the last five years has eased, thereby reduced the cost by one-third of the Lake Oswego sewer interceptor project. Spurred by the success of the OHSU Center for Health and Healing on the Willamette River, the Foothills area of Lake Oswego has redeveloped. On Kruse Way the West End Building Branch Library has opened as well as the privately funded pool and exercise facility.
Mary Nash, driving her hybrid car, picks her children up from school and immediately heads to the Lake Oswego Community Center where her 6 year old attends a creative play class and her 10 year old settles into his art class. While the children are creatively engaged, Mary is free to participate in a holistic yoga class. After class they wait eagerly for Dad to walk across the street at the end of his day's work at the Providence Medical Center where he councils people on how to reduce stress in their lives.
Before long the whole family is frolicking in the play pool and Dad comments to one of the lifeguards, 'I don't know what I would have done if the pool foundation hadn't raised the private money to build this fantastic facility.' After the swim the family walks across the lobby to the branch library and, to their delight, the books they ordered from the downtown library have arrived. What a treat, they can start reading their books in the hearth area in front of the large fireplace while they wait to be seated for the annual showing of artwork from Lake Oswego's Japanese sister city.
Across town a regional housing forum is being held at the new city hall. Located at the foot of B Avenue and adjacent to the Willamette Steps it offers a commanding view of Mount Hood and the new Willamette River Marina. Thanks to private enterprise and the creativity of the Foothills Area property owners this formerly little used industrial area provides market-rate and workforce housing, art galleries, and incubator space for high tech and bio-medical companies.
Can this happen? Yes it can! As Thomas Jefferson said: 'We steer our ship with hope, leaving fear astern.' The issue in the upcoming election, therefore, is whether we stay on the path that has served us well and will lead to a robust and bright future, or whether we let fear cause us to retreat to a romanticized past. Our choice is not whether change is coming, but whether we can guide this change so that it benefits the needs of all our citizens. We cannot master change through fear, but only through embracing new ideas and with the gift of reason.
I choose to stay on the course that will produce a better future for our children. I choose a bright and prosperous future for our city. I choose to continue the American dream by seeing a future of unlimited opportunities. Please join with me to help make this bright future a reality. Vote no on ballot measure 3-269, which will suffocate the future of our city. Vote yes on ballot measure 3-273, which will keep the former Safeco property in public ownership so that it can be used to provide the most benefit to the most people of Lake Oswego.
Frank Groznik is a Lake Oswego City Councilor.