Will Albertsons/Regal Cinemas stop light stay? Maybe
LUBA remands decision to remove traffic light
The Oregon Land Use Board of Appeals has remanded a decision to remove a traffic signal that feds into two major city shopping complexes along Tualatin-Sherwood Road.
On March 5, LUBA remanded Washington Countys previous decision to remove a stop light at the entrances to both the Albertsons and Regal Cinemas complexes. Attorneys for the property owners argued that the signals removal (and the ability to turn left when exiting the complexes), is a land use decision and not simply a county engineering decision, something LUBA agreed with.
But LUBA findings stated that it is unable to resolve the parties dispute regarding whether the decision is subject to the citys (Sherwood) planning authority.
As a result, the land use appeals board is sending the issue back to the county and the petitioners where theyll have the opportunity to address what the exact relationship between the city, county planners and the permitting of development along the portion of Tualatin-Sherwood Road that falls inside city limits.
Both MGP X Properties, LLC (owners of Sherwood Market Place) and TakFal Properties (owners of the Regal Cinemas complex) challenged Washington Countys proposal to remove the traffic light.
The Washington County Department of Land Use and Transportation has been working on plans to widen Tualatin-Sherwood Road from Borchers Drive to Langer Farms Parkway for several years.
Part of the $12 million project calls for the removal of the traffic signal, which would mean that traffic exiting Sherwood Market Place (the Albertsons complex) would be required to turn right onto Tualatin-Sherwood Road. The same would be true for those exiting Regal Cinemas. A six-inch-tall center median at that intersection would prevent crossing in either direction, traffic engineers have said.
Some property owners and businesses said removal of the light would significantly hurt their businesses. Katie Boedigheimer, the general manager of Roses restaurant, testified at a previous Sherwood City Council meeting that the signals removal could put her restaurant out of business.
Phil Grillo, an attorney representing TakFal Properties, has previously told the city that his client wants to see the traffic light stay in place unless other options would allow access to the Regal Cinemas theaters.
Representatives from Takfal Properties said the company may appeal portions of the LUBA decision that didnt fall in its favor to the Oregon Court of Appeals, according to a press release. The deadline to file that appeal is March 26.
Stephen Roberts, communications coordinator for the Washington County Department of Land Use & Transportation, said the county is still reviewing what its next steps will be. Meanwhile, the Tualatin Sherwood Road widening project is on hold until the legal issues are settled, he said.
The city of Sherwood is reviewing the LUBA decision as well.
Our intention is to collaborate with all of the parties to find a solution that works for everyone involved, City Manager Joe Gall said on March 12.
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