"To protect the Oregon coast by working with coastal residents for sustainable communities; protection and restoration of coastal and marine natural resources; providing education and advocacy on land use development; and adaptation to climate change."

Oregon Coast Alliance is the coastal affiliate of 1000 Friends of Oregon
Oregon Coast Alliance Newsletter

  Remand Hearings and New Board Members

Arizona Ranch: The Campground Proposal in the Wetland

Manzanita Lofts: Is a Hotel in Harmony with the Residential Area?

Goodbye and Hello to ORCA Board members
Arizona Ranch: The Campground Proposal in the Wetland
Arizona Beach. Courtesy OPRD
At the Curry County Board of Commissioners’ appeal hearing on the proposed 31-slot RV park for private property on Arizona Ranch Road, many issues were brought up by local residents, as well as Oregon Coast Alliance. The site’s longstanding problems with septic systems was described at length, as DEQ approval for this project will be necessary before it could move ahead, even with a county permit in hand.

There was much testimony about the site’s wetland nature. Curry County refused to contact the Department of State Lands, which regulates removal-fill in wetlands, on the grounds that the National Wetland Inventory does not show a wetland at the site. However, the NWI is notoriously imprecise in showing wetland boundaries and details. Several parties concerned about the Arizona Ranch project contacted DSL independently, sending pictures showing standing water at the site at different months of the year. Despite this evidence, DSL refused either to send a staff member out to the site to look at the wetland vegetation, or to require a wetland delineation of the applicant. DSL really failed its mission as a protector of wetlands in this instance.

Neighbors additionally stressed the concerns about groundwater, the effects on neighboring wells, and the septic problems. The Board of Commissioners will make its final decision on June 7th.
Manzanita Lofts: Is a Hotel in Harmony with the Residential Area?
Manzanita from Neahkahnie Mountain. Courtesy OCVA
Manzanita planning commission held a remand hearing on the proposed Manzanita Lofts hotel, which would consist of 34 units, ranging from stacked single units to small cabins with cooking facilities. The five hour hearing ranged around several technical issues dealing with density, traffic and similar details. But the underlying issue is one Manzanita ordinances require be resolved: a finding that the development be in harmony with surrounding uses. The applicant tried to argue that hotels, as a permitted use in the zone, would obviously be in harmony with the surrounding golf course and residential development — otherwise it would not be a permitted use.

But neighbors quite rightly argued that a development must show it is in harmony with the surroundings; many proposals for a permitted use would clearly not be in harmony. That is the reason developers must meet this criterion, and neighbors have made it clear this development is not in harmony with the neighborhood.The planning commission will make its final decision in mid June.
Goodbye and Hello to ORCA Board members
Dr. Barry Wulff
Robin Risley
Jan Mitchell
Oregon Coast Alliance bids farewell to longstanding Board member Dr. Barry Wulff, professor emeritus of biology at Eastern Connecticut State University. He has been an active community volunteer for decades, most notably leading the Marys Peak Group of the Sierra Club from 1995-2010. Good luck with your future activities, Barry.

ORCA welcomes Robin Risley and Jan Mitchell to the ORCA Board. Robin Risley, a longstanding local realtor, has lived in Cannon Beach for more than 45 years. She has served on the Clatsop County Planning Commission, Cannon Beach Planning Commission and Cannon Beach City Council, and also served for eight years as an Oregon Parks and Recreation Commission member. Jan Mitchell of Astoria had a long and successful planning career in a large California city before moving to Astoria, where she has lived for 29 years. Jan has served on the Planning Commissions of both Astoria and Clatsop County, and served on the Oregon Heritage Commission for eight years. Welcome, Robin and Jan!
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