CITY OF WOODBURN
REFERENDUM ON WOODBURN URBAN RENEWAL PLAN
QUESTION: Shall the Woodburn Urban Renewal Plan be adopted?
SUMMARY: The City Council passed Ordinance 2298, which adopted the Woodburn Urban Renewal Plan. This ordinance was referred to the voters by referendum petition.
The Urban Renewal Plan defines the urban renewal area boundaries and goals and describes urban renewal projects. Projects include street, curb, sidewalk and streetscape improvements; pedestrian, bike and transit facilities; public parking facilities; public open spaces; public safety improvements; loans and grants to improve buildings; housing rehabilitation; and public art. Projects will be financed by tax increment financing, which is the growth in taxable value in those properties located within urban renewal district boundaries. The maximum indebtedness under the Urban Renewal Plan is $29,300,000.
The purpose of the Urban Renewal Plan is to rehabilitate and redevelop blighted areas consistent with the Woodburn Comprehensive Plan. The Plan will be administered by the Woodburn Urban Renewal Agency, which consists of the Woodburn City Council acting in a different legal capacity. The Urban Renewal Plan authorizes the Agency to proceed with the urban renewal projects, make loans and grants, and acquire and dispose of property.
The Woodburn City Council passed Ordinance 2298 on August 13, 2001, which adopted the Woodburn Urban Renewal Plan. This matter was referred to the voters by referendum petition.
Under Ordinance 2298, the purpose of the Urban Renewal Plan is to rehabilitate selected areas in Woodburn. The Plan outlines work to be completed and financed over the next two decades to improve highways, streets, water and sewer systems; improve housing; and revitalize the condition, appearance and economic viability of Woodburn’s Downtown. The Plan establishes urban renewal area boundaries, and goals, and describes urban renewal projects. Urban Renewal area boundaries encompass Downtown Woodburn, Young Street, North and South Front Streets, sections of Highway 214 and 99E, a limited number of parcels adjacent to Highway 214 and 99E, and one parcel adjacent to Interstate 5. Less than 10 percent of Woodburn is included in the urban renewal area.
Urban renewal funding will be used for widening Highway 214, rebuilding and widening North and South Front Streets, and making paving, circulation, sidewalk, drainage and landscaping improvements within area boundaries. Planned activities in the Downtown include street, sidewalk, landscape and lighting improvements, street furnishings and public art, building renovations and façade improvements, creation of public spaces, business incubation and small businesses assistance. These activities are estimated to cost $23,104,000. The Plan will be administered by the Woodburn Urban Renewal Agency, which currently consists of the City Council acting in a different Legal capacity. The Plan authorizes the Agency to proceed with renewal projects, make loans and grants, and acquire and dispose of property.
Projects will be funded by tax increment financing, which is the growth in property tax generated from only those properties located within urban renewal boundaries. Urban renewal financing will not increase tax rates. It allocates a share of the tax growth that would otherwise be distributed to existing taxing bodies, to the Agency. The Plan allows the Agency to borrow money. The maximum indebtedness under the Urban Renewal Plan is $29,300,000, which would be repaid from tax increment financing.
The City Council is concerned with traffic circulation and the condition and appearance of the Downtown and other areas in Woodburn. A September 2000 study found conditions within the proposed urban renewal area included under-use; inadequate streets, rights of way and utilities; obsolete and deteriorated buildings; and depreciated property values. City funds are not available to remedy or to comprehensively address these concerns. The Council selected Urban Renewal as a means of financing improvements, programs, and activities deemed necessary by the City Council to remedy these conditions.
A “yes” vote on this measure will enact the Urban Renewal Plan, and allow the City to undertake the improvement projects, programs and activities in the Plan. A “no” vote on this measure would reject the Urban Renewal Plan. If the Plan is rejected, no tax increment financing will be available for improvement projects, and the City cannot implement the Urban Renewal Plan.
MEASURE NO. 24-76 – CITY OF WOODBURN
Argument in Favor:
We are concerned citizens, working together for the long-term benefit of all of Woodburn. We, like you, care about Woodburn and want to make it more livable.
The City Council developed the Urban Renewal plan to answer long-term goals and directions established by the citizens of our community.
As responsible citizens we feel that the improvement of the City’s infrastructure is a positive step for Woodburn’s future.
Urban Renewal will benefit the entire City by making improvements that will enhance livability. It will make great strides towards better traffic flow on Hwy. 214 and Front St., as well as improving the livability of the Downtown area.
This is our community and Urban Renewal is the way to make all of Woodburn more livable. Please vote “Yes” for Urban Renewal.
Committee for Woodburn Livability:
(This information provided by the Committee for Woodburn Livability)
No arguments opposed to this measure were filed.