Monday, April 26, 2010

Envision Eugene

The City of Eugene has launched a program to identify "efficiency measures" to accommodate anticipated population gains over the coming decades. Entitled “Envision Eugene,” it is the second phase of the current planning process for future growth in our community. The first phase was completed last week when the City Council accepted the draft land need figures generated by the Eugene Comprehensive Lands Analysis (ECLA). The Envision Eugene website was launched recently as a tool for sharing information.

The following is excerpted from the project website:

Envisioning how and where we grow in the future must begin with the framework set by Oregon planning law. Before we can consider expanding the urban growth boundary, we must complete an analysis of ways to develop more efficiently within our current boundary.

The principle of compact development is central to Eugene’s growth management strategy. Growing compactly means using resources and land more efficiently, reducing the need for public investments in things like streets and water lines, and creating vibrant communities where people want to live, work, and shop. However, our growth management strategies must enhance our quality of life. When we reach our community’s maximum tolerance for additional development within the UGB, we must look outward to avoid compromising the quality of our existing neighborhoods. . .

. . . Eugene’s land assessment project (ECLA) will set the status quo scenario for how much land we would need to accommodate our 20 year population projections if things happen in the future as they have happened in the past. With Envision Eugene, we have an opportunity to look at alternative futures that are different from the base case scenario and that may lessen the need to expand the city outward. These alternatives look at how Eugene could grow by asking:
  • What if we increased the amount of infill development in certain places and in certain ways?
  • What if we incentivized mixed use development in identified locations?
  • What housing options exist for people moving into the community or for people moving within Eugene?
Eugene's Urban Growth Boundary

The City’s timeline for having a preferred growth scenario adopted by the City Council is February 2011. To meet that deadline, the City must conduct community workshops and complete its technical analysis by July 2010. The project kickoff meeting is Tuesday, May 4 at the Eugene Hilton Hotel & Conference Center, 66 East 6th Avenue. There will be two public sessions that day, one from 4-6 pm and a second between 7-9 pm. Plan on attending one of these sessions and add your voice to this important community conversation.

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