Linda Lane Frequently Asked Questions
The following information is being provided to address community interest in 34 acres of property located along Linda Lane, South of Mt. Vernon Road and east of Jasper Road. This page will be updated as needed in response to community questions.
The City purchased 34 acres of property along Linda Lane, south of Mt. Vernon Road and east of Jasper Road (see property location map), in December 2021 for wetland banking purposes. As part of the City’s Jasper Trunk Sewer Extension Project, the City is required under state law to offset wetland impacts caused by the wastewater project by either purchasing credits in a local wetland mitigation bank or providing for permanent protection of a similar area of wetland. Wetland bank credits were not available at the time, and the City was aware that the Linda Lane property was for sale and contained suitable conservation wetlands to meet this requirement. The City negotiated a purchase price for the property that was in line with the expected cost of wetland banking credits if they had been available. To meet the Jasper Trunk Sewer Extension Project’s wetland mitigation requirements, the City will place a conservation (no-build) easement over a portion of the wetland area.
The City is working with Department of State Lands to place a conservation easement over approximately 7.5 acres of high-value wetlands in the northeast corner of the property. The City is still working to determine how much of the remaining approximately 27 acres could be developed in the future. There are other wetlands and steep slopes present on the property that may inhibit development of additional acres.
When the Springfield City Council authorized the purchase in late 2021 for wetlands banking, they also directed City staff to investigate development potential on the rest of the site. That investigation is still underway, and no options have been formally presented to the Council as of the date of this FAQ.
The Linda Lane property is zoned R-1, which is intended for low density residential uses. Potential development options include partitioning the property into development-ready sites and selling these for market-rate housing development or making portions of the property available for affordable housing development either with or without other City financial support.
Potential placement of temporary emergency housing or a shelter for unhoused people on this property is not one of the options under consideration or investigation.
Other than placement of the wetland conservation easement over a portion of the wetlands, no specific actions or development have been approved by the City to date.
The City intends to initiate annexation of this property as a next step to potential future development. Annexation brings the property inside City limits and is a necessary step for the City to take regardless of how the City Council decides to make the surplus property available for development in the future.
A key reason for the City to annex the property in the near future is that annexation ensures that the property is within the jurisdiction of the Springfield Police Department and Eugene-Springfield Fire, to respond to any potential public safety issues that arise on the property.
Annexation by itself does not authorize any specific development activity to occur on the property. By bringing the property inside City limits, it expands the options for future development proposals to include “urban” uses such as residential subdivisions and housing development.
The process for annexation is provided in Springfield Development Code section 5.7.100. The process requires a City Council public hearing and several forms of public notice for that hearing, including posting the property and mailing notices to properties that are within 300 feet of the perimeter of the annexed property. The City Council’s decision to annex property requires the Council to find that the property can be served with the minimum level of key urban facilities and services (such as: transportation networks; water, sewer, electricity, and other utilities; emergency services; and schools), in an orderly, efficient, and timely manner. The annexation also must be consistent with the City’s adopted and applicable comprehensive planning policies.
Once annexation is completed, the buildable portions of the property that do not contain wetlands or steep slopes could be developed with housing that is allowed in the R-1 zoning district. Some examples of development allowed in R-1 are below. For a complete table of permitted uses in R-1 and related development requirements, please reference Springfield Development Code section 3.2.200.
- Single unit dwellings or duplexes. When developed on individual lots as in a typical subdivision, these uses are permitted at a density of up to 14 lots per net acre, not accounting for areas dedicated to road networks or public stormwater treatment.
- Cottage cluster development. Cottage cluster development consists of cottages up to 900 square feet in size oriented around a common courtyard. The density of a cottage cluster development may range from 4 to 35 units per net acre depending on the size and configuration of the development.
- Manufactured dwelling park. The density of a manufactured dwelling park in R-1 is 14 units per acre for market rate development. For a manufactured dwelling park that qualifies as “affordable housing” limited to residents earning 80% of area median income, the maximum density is 28 units per net acre. The City has had preliminary discussions with St Vincent de Paul of Lane County about suitability of the property for a manufactured dwelling park for low-income residents.
Over the past decade, the City has undertaken a number of efforts related to addressing the needs of manufactured dwelling park residents in Springfield. In 2019, the City Council identified the need for a new manufactured dwelling park in Springfield, given the potential for displacement of existing manufactured dwelling park residents by redevelopment in other areas of the City, such as the Glenwood Riverfront area.
With City Council support, the City partnered with Representative John Lively and St. Vincent de Paul Society of Lane County (SVdP) to advocate in the Oregon Legislature for a significant grant for development of a new manufactured dwelling park in Springfield. Subsequently, the state legislature adopted House Bill 2869 allocating $3,000,000 in state general funds for this purpose. COVID-19 impacts to state funding resulted in a two-year delay in Springfield receiving access to these funds, which were finally transferred to the City of Springfield in October 2022.
In February 2022, the City Council held a work session to discuss housing and homelessness projects under several state and federal grants to the City. This discussion included the $3,000,000 grant under HB 2869 for the City and SVdP to develop a new manufactured dwelling park in Springfield. The Council packet identified the Linda Lane property as a potential site for the future manufactured dwelling park and informed the Council that City staff were conducting background due diligence on that possibility. To date, staff are still investigating the suitability of the Linda Lane property for this project and no specific project proposal has been presented to, or approved by, the City Council.
SVdP is also still in the exploratory phase of a potential project. While there are still many details to work out, SVdP is interested in developing a manufactured dwelling park with mix of homeownership units for low- and moderate- income residents and rental units for low-income residents. Ideally, the development would include a minimum of 40 units for management efficiency, as a mix of single- and double-wide units.
Will community members be informed about, and have an opportunity to comment about, the City’s plans for the site in the future?
Yes, there will be multiple opportunities for community members to provide input to the Springfield City Council as the City moves forward with decision-making about this property.
Annexation is planned for Spring 2023 and will include notice posted on the City’s website, on the property, and mailed to properties within 300 feet of the property’s perimeter consistent with Springfield Development Code section 5.7.130.
If the City Council wishes to move forward with partitioning the property for development of the buildable areas, notice of the partition application will be mailed to the owners of property that is within 300 feet of the property to be partitioned. Interested parties will have the opportunity to submit written comments before a decision is made by the City’s Development & Public Works Community Development Division Director on the partition.
Before any City-owned property can be transferred or sold for market-rate or affordable housing development, or any other purpose, the City Council must approve the sale or transfer at a public meeting. If the sale is for anything other than affordable housing, the Council is required to provide public notice and hold a public hearing under ORS 221.725. Alternatively, the City Council could decide to make the property available for affordable housing development, which requires either a public hearing and notice, or an open solicitation of development proposals by affordable housing providers.
Additionally, community members are invited to provide comment to the City Council on any relevant topic during Business from the Audience at any regular meeting of the City Council. Regular City Council meetings occur every first and third Monday of the month (or Tuesday if Monday is a legal holiday) at 7 p.m., in City Hall or via Zoom using the log-in information provided on the meeting agenda. Agendas are posted to the City’s website each Thursday afternoon preceding the next Council meeting. Details can be found at https://springfield-or.gov/city/city-council-meetings/
What is the City’s plan for future communication with the neighborhood regarding future development plans?
In addition to the opportunities for community feedback listed above, the City is making available a “Linda Lane Interested Parties List.” Interested parties may sign up to receive future updates and public notices impacting the future of the Linda Lane property by signing up here or using the button at the bottom of the page.