The overwhelming majority of neighbors who took the time to come to the past two Evergreen Neighborhood Association’s well-attended general meetings, and/or respond to an ENA survey, made it known that they opposed the W&K Wizer block development as presently proposed.

In a total of 153 survey responses, only 10 neighborhood associates voted to support the concept of the project as presently designed, though an additional 16 associates would support the project if the fifth floor were removed.

At the Oct. 23 meeting, the complete results of the survey were presented together with a summary of comments received from both the surveys and in testimony at the Sept. 30 general meeting. By a greater than a 6-to-1 majority, the attendees at the meeting on the 23rd passed a resolution to have “the Evergreen Neighborhood Association go on record to the DRC, opposing the Wizer block development as currently proposed.” 

I wish to thank the Evergreen Neighborhood Association’s chairman, Paden Prichard, and the board for reaching out so extensively to the neighborhood with not only a mailed notice to all residents, but also with emails of meeting notices and reminders for the two recent ENA meetings, devoted exclusively to address ENA’s response to the current proposal by W&K for development of the Wizer block. Above and beyond duty, Mr. Prichard and the board emailed surveys, which were also available at the ENA meeting, to ensure a wide casting of opportunity for all in the neighborhood to convey their opinions regarding the proposed development. The emailing of this survey was very much appreciated by many, as it allowed even those who could not attend meetings to email their opinions directly to Mr. Prichard, who facilitated the meetings, to ensure their concerns were included.

In comments from the survey and at the past two meetings, I heard one neighbor after another speak to oppose the project’s density and scale as they are so drastically incompatible with the village character of our downtown, and to the marked increase in traffic that would not only pour onto our residential streets but intolerably bottleneck the traffic flow in our downtown, obstructing shopping and city residents’ commutes as well.

What was apparent and heartening to me as I heard fellow neighbors’ opposition to this project was ENA’s continued, longstanding willingness to raise a voice in devoted support for ensuring that the development of our downtown be accomplished with projects that not only revitalize but are also compatible with its village character, thus ensuring our downtown remains a place that one wishes to return to again and again, and a place that remains lovely and unique.

Anne Meneakis is a resident of Lake Oswego.

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