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This week: A hill and field east of Gaston. Next week: Hawthorne Street and 26th Avenue in Forest Grove.

NEWS-TIMES PHOTO: JILL REHKOPF SMITH - Willamette Valley Vineyards is building a tractor barn and equipment shed in this area on the south side of Spring Hill Road.Some Gaston-area residents have been wondering "what's going on there" at the corner of Southwest Spring Hill Road and Southwest Hardebeck Road, across from Fisher Farms.

A few years ago, grapevines began appearing on the large hill there. More recently a flurry of digging and grading has been happening at the hill's northeast corner, as well as on the property just across Spring Hill Road to the north.

According to Christine Clair, winery director for the Turner-based Willamette Valley Vineyards, which owns the property, a tractor barn and equipment shed will be constructed on the smaller parcel of land at the base of the hill.

Across the road, the larger construction area will hold a pond, which will provide irrigation for the vineyard.NEWS-TIMES PHOTO: JILL REHKOPF SMITH - This area on the north side of Spring Hill will hold a pond for irrigation.

"We're digging it now so it can fill up over the winter," Clair said.

The vineyard itself holds pinot gris and pinot noir grapes, she said, and is named the Loeza Vineyard in honor of the company's vineyard manager, Efren Loeza, who lives in Forest Grove and has worked for Willamette Valley Vineyards for 37 years. He continues to farm its 500 acres of vineyards.COURTESY PHOTO - Willamette Valley Vineyards manager and Forest Grove resident Efren Loeza celebrates the first planting at the Loeza Vineyards just northeast of Gaston, named in his honor.

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