Lake Oswego closes on Safeco land for $20M

The city had threatened to condemn the insurer's 14-acre site

The city of Lake Oswego closed a $20 million deal with Safeco Insurance on Friday, buying the company's 14-acre campus on Kruse Way for a proposed community center after threatening to take it by condemnation.

The city initially moved to condemn the Safeco site in December after negotiations to buy it failed. Safeco listed the Kruse Way property for sale last fall after announcing plans to relocate. City officials said they weren't taken seriously in subsequent offers to buy it and took the first legal steps to condemn the land to force a deal.

Safeco came to the table for talks in January and accepted the city's $20 million offer in April.

The Lake Oswego City Council aims to propose a bond measure to cover the cost of the buy and a proposed community center, possibly in 2007. A citizen steering committee is meanwhile probing designs for the community center.

See more on the story in the July 13th Lake Oswego Review.