The city has developed six different proposals for extending Bend’s urban growth boundary. The plans differ as to where the city would expand, and what mix of development would be allowed.
“Right now, we’re at an interesting state because we are now finally to the point of drawing UGB boundaries,” said Brian Rankin, long range planning manager for the city.
Part of the UGB development process is also focused on how land should be adapted or re-zoned to encourage density or new development within current city limits.
The city wants to grow Bend by about 2,000 acres. In 2010, the the state rejected Bend’s plan to expand by 8,000 acres. The state said Bend hadn’t done enough to increase density on existing land. The state also said the plan didn’t comply with legal requirements to reduce reliance on cars. Oregon requires a city that wants to expand its UGB to develop in a way that won’t put significantly more vehicles on the road.
There were other issues with the 2010 proposal, said Rankin.
“It was too big. We didn’t focus on infrastructure, or redevelopment. We also didn’t address housing need and affordability in that a proposal. So we’re trying to address those sore topics in the remand and really try to create a great plan.”
So now residents have a new chance to weigh in on expansion options anew.
Three different advisory committees meet regularly to provide input to the city. The city will collect feedback through a public survey and meetings this fall. The city and Deschutes County could vote on a plan as early as next year, and then it would go to the state for approval.
“It’s really a big, big project,” said Rankin. “We’re talking about the future of Bend, so this is really important.”