They fear possible future connector streets will divide their quiet, historic neighborhood and ruin the tranquility that residents have enjoyed for decades

REGAL COURIER FILE PHOTO - The private Rivermeade Community Club Park on the Willamette River has been around since 1953 and is only open to Rivermeade residents who pay annual dues, which about three-quarters of them do.The residents of Rivermeade, a quiet, historic neighborhood off Beef Bend Road just west of King City, are opposed to possible negative impacts to their community from the city's efforts to expand its urban growth boundary west to Roy Rogers Road.

The UGB area, referred to as URA 6D, runs from King City's western city limits to Roy Rogers Road south of Beef Bend Road to the Tualatin River, and the Rivermeade community runs from Beef Bend Road to a private park on the Tualatin River.

The proposed concept plan for URA 6D includes creating street connections from King City's western boundary to Roy Rogers, which Rivermeade residents fear may slice directly through their neighborhood.

H. Richard Werth, a Rivermeade resident and co-chair of the Rivermeade Land Use Committee, submitted a petition to the City Council on Oct. 4 signed by 49 property owners representing 94 percent of Rivermeade property owners opposing a possible street through their community.

"Basically, the petition demonstrates our concern that in order to facilitate the city's desire to develop the commercial 'Town Center' fronting Southwest Roy Rogers Road, they have no problem with proposing the development of a new arterial road, which in effect would divide and radically alter the very character of a quiet, close-knit, rural neighborhood that was established 70 years ago," Werth wrote in an email to the Regal Courier.

"As is obvious by the number of residents who signed the petition, we feel that this is a sacrifice which should not be made simply to accommodate urban growth and development," he added.

The petition submitted to the King City City Council states that the petitioners strongly object to any future development of URA 6D "which is deemed to diminish or significantly alter the unique character of the Rivermeade neighborhood or which may have a negative impact on the environmentally sensitive nature of the area, including but not limited to, the expansion of either Southwest 137th Avenue or Southwest River Lane solely for the purpose of providing an east-west connection from the current western border of King City to the westernmost extent of URA 6D bordering Southwest Roy Rogers Road."

Furthermore, in his letter to the City Council, Werth stated that during his Aug. 8 meeting with the UGB project management team that includes planners from Urbsworks, "this specific issue was discussed at length, and it was agreed that the project management team would formulate some viable alternatives or other suggestions which could be presented to the residents of Rivermeade for consideration."

He added, "We are disappointed that to date, there has been absolutely no communication or follow-up from King City."

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