Featured Stories

Other Pamplin Media Group sites

District seeks UGB amendment


Adding 40 acres is a step toward building two new schools

The West Linn-Wilsonville School District is advancing plans to build two new schools on the east side of Wilsonville, on a 40-acre site known as the Advance Road property.

Although the district has not yet begun planning the schools’ construction, its recent application to bring 40 district-owned acres into the Metro regional government’s urban growth boundary (UGB) is a step in that direction.

Anticipating future enrollment growth, the district purchased the Advance Road site in 2003 because of its location, terrain and size, said school district Director of Operations Tim Woodley.

A new middle school is the district’s priority. West Linn’s Athey Creek and Rosemont Ridge middle schools are beyond their intended capacity, and Wilsonville’s Inza Wood, the most overcrowded of the three, has been using portable classrooms since about 2007. Building another new primary school will be a lower priority but still part of the district’s long-term strategy for the site.

“A primary school requires 10 acres and a middle school requires 20 acres,” Woodley said. That means the district has need for just 30 of the site’s 40 acres. The property eventually will include a 10-acre city park, as part of an intergovernmental agreement between the school district and the city of Wilsonville.

“We traded 10 acres at Advance Road for the 10 acres that Lowrie (Primary School) sits on,” Woodley said. “We built the school, the city deeded it to us and we own it.”

The district has been unable to convey the 10-acre Advance Road plot to the city, because it lies outside the city limits. That is one reason for the district’s application to bring the site into the UGB.

The district also is considering its strategy as it plans how to ask voters to approve a new bond, following the expiration of the current bond at the end of the 2013-14 school year.

Now is the time to ask for the UGB adjustment, Woodley said. “Next year, because Metro is going through a whole land reserve process, the opportunity for an amendment to the UGB doesn’t exist,” he said. “If we don’t do it now, it will push it out to the following year.”

Asking voters to approve a new capital bond, Woodley said, would be “very difficult” unless the district has land available to build.

A public hearing regarding the application will be held by a Metro hearings officer at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 27, in council chambers at Wilsonville City Hall, 29799 SW Town Center Loop East. 

Following the hearin g, the hearings officer will prepare a recommendation for consideration by the Metro Council, which will make the final decision.