Charter protection shouldn’t be exclusive to Springbrook

The Friends of Springbrook Park Board’s letter in the LO Review this week, “Please do not support LoveLOParks charter petition,” is another attempt to misrepresent our citizen-led initiative with more misleading commentary unsubstantiated claims.

It’s interesting that the majority of misinformation and misleading accusations are coming from a small contingent of residents residing in the Uplands neighborhood…where Springbrook Park resides. They fail to recognize Springbrook Park’s legal protections since 1978. It is an undisputed fact that Chapter X has protected Springbrook Park from development over the decades.

Many of these people have been offered to sit-down with us and walk through the full text (some even before it was an initiative) of our citizen’s initiative to protect our natural parks; instead, they have chosen a path at an attempt to write a narrative that misinterprets, misleads, and is untruthful. Our amendment’s intent is clear and on solid ground — it limits development inconsistent with a natural area and prohibits cutting any tree for the purposes of commercial logging.

There is no dispute that our City’s Friends groups, Oswego Lake Watershed Organization, and the Lake Oswego Sustainability Network provide a significant contribution to natural land preservation activities. But, preservation is not limited to only maintenance and environmental threats. Preservation must include legal protection from human development threats. Especially since these natural parks comprise less than 4% of all the land in Lake Oswego.

Just The Facts

Springbrook: “This proposed charter amendment makes no provisions for such a public process and would prevent such future modification to existing plans.”
LoveLOParks: Chapter X – Park Development Limitation specifically defines the types of development allowed and prohibited. Our amendment establishes the baseline criteria for which any future natural park master plan for any natural park subject to Chapter X must abide. Our amendment does not replace nor prevent the City developing and adopting park master plans.

Existing adopted park master plans, such as Iron Mountain, were purposefully exempted from these new constraints. This reasonable exemption was included at the request of the Director of Parks and Recreation himself.

Springbrook: “Hallinan Woods has some paved paths for public access for wheelchairs. The trails need repairs and the proposed charter would not allow the paths to be repaired.”
LoveLOParks: Our amendment purposefully allows the City to maintain existing facilities, structures, roads, parking lots, and trails. Hallinan’s trails can be maintained.

Springbrook: “…the City and Parks leadership are exploring park areas where disabled access would have a parking place or two. This might well be prevented …”
LoveLOParks: While our amendment prohibits any new master plan from implementing parking, it purposefully exempts existing park master plans. When you look comprehensively at these 15 natural areas, the facts are clear:

  • Existing parking lots are unaffected and can be maintained
    • Bryant Woods (connector to Canal Woods & River Run)
    • Stevens Meadows
    • West Waluga Park
  • Many parks have access to adjacent parking
    • Cooks Butte (4 entrances w/ ample street parking)
    • Hallinan Woods
    • Springbrook Park
  • Existing park master plans for natural parks are exempt
    • Canal Acres (Bryant Woods, Canal Acres, River Run)
    • Iron Mountain
    • Stevens Homestead (connector to Stevens Meadows & Cooks Butte)
    • Woodmont Natural Area
  • Remaining parks size and geography likely unsuitable for in-park parking lots
    • Cornell Natural Area (3.2 acres)
    • Glennmorrie Greenway (1.3 acres)
    • Kerr Open Space (10 acres)
    • Lamont Springs Natural Area (0.5 acre)
    • South Shore Natural Area (9.2 acres)