Featured Stories

Other Pamplin Media Group sites

Troutdale says no to development project

Council, public argue traffic issues too large for Cherry Park plan

Following one of the largest public hearings in Troutdale, the City Council voted against a zone change for a proposed apartment complex at its Tuesday, Jan. 26, meeting.

Sheldon Development asked for a zone change at the 6.88-acre parcel across from the Cherry Park Market Center, which would allow them to construct 168 apartment units instead of single-family homes for which the property is zoned. While the council acknowledged Troutdale's need for more housing, councilors indicated the traffic problems at the intersection of Cherry Park Road and Northeast 242nd Drive were too insurmountable to consider adding more users to the mix.

“Quite simply, the intersection of 238/242nd and Cherry Park Road is failing now. We all saw that with the temporary closure of 257th,” said Councilor Eric Anderson. “This intersection and stretch of road is troublesome under normal circumstances. What is most alarming when considering this development is the fact Multnomah County has no plans to make improvements to 242nd or Cherry Park Road now or in the foreseeable future. It is for that reason alone that I cannot support this or any development on this site.”

The zone change had been recommended by city staff, as the application met the city's criteria. The traffic issues could have been considered during the site review process, but as the intersection is Multnomah County's responsibility, the council largely felt it would be unwise to approve the zone change with no real solution to possible problems.

“Everything I heard was negative,” said Councilor Dave Ripma. “It meets the criteria for the zone change, but it's not beneficial for Troutdale.”

Rich Allen was the only councilor to vote in favor of the zone change, citing concerns for rising rent costs and a lack of housing.

“I think the devil's in the design phase,” Allen said.

Rick Givens, planner representing Sheldon Development, agreed that moving forward with design review would provide an opportunity to mitigate traffic concerns. But with the proposal denied, Givens said the next option for Sheldon Development is unclear, and the company is considering other options.