On Wednesday morning, May 22, The Chronicle was first to report a ruling by the Oregon Court of Appeals concerning a rezoning proposal at Port Westward.
See the attached story.
The following is reaction from the Port of Columbia County.
The Oregon Court of Appeals has upheld the Oregon Land Use Board of Appeals (LUBA) decision on the Port Westward rezone, rejecting the contention by Columbia Riverkeeper that the LUBA decision to uphold Columbia County’s alternative sites analysis was “unlawful in substance.”
Opponents challenged Columbia County’s decision to rezone 837 acres at Port Westward near Clatskanie on nine separate points. Eight of those arguments were rejected by LUBA with one point needing more information and remanded back to the County. The Court of Appeals has affirmed the LUBA decision. The Port can now work with the County to address the one remaining question on compatibility.
“It’s encouraging that the Court of Appeals has upheld LUBA’s decision, which now provides a clear pathway to the last remaining question,” Port of Columbia County Executive Director Doug Hayes said. “We continue to move in a positive direction for economic development in north Columbia County.”
Port Westward is a deepwater port with existing dock facilities and direct access to the 43-foot navigation channel in the Columbia River. The 837-acre expansion area at Port Westward will address the need, both at the local and state level, for industrial land.
Prior to the rezone, there was no developable acreage at Port Westward not encumbered with wetlands, conservation easements, existing rural industrial facilities, transmission lines, and long-term leases.