Of the Keizertimes

The Keizer City Council has a lot on its plate at its April 5 meeting.

Between the council and the urban renewal agency meetings, the groups will consider buying and selling land, a landscaping and sidewalks grant for the local bowling alley and changes to the Keizer Station master plan.

The first discussion begins with a joint council/agency meeting at 6 p.m.

As reported first in the Keizertimes, the urban renewal agency will consider selling about two acres of land in Area B of Keizer Station for about $1.4 million to RJMEW Investments, LLC. Previous statements by elected officials indicate the most likely tenant will be Salem Radiology, who would construct an office-type building near the corner of McLeod Lane and Lockhaven Drive.

A caveat to this is the purchase of land owned by the Tiersma family, whose land cuts diagonally across Area B, across Keizer Station Boulevard and up to Lockhaven Drive. The urban renewal agency asked staff in March to prepare a resolution authorizing the sale, and the agency will vote on that as well.

At 6:30 p.m. the agency will consider granting about $118,000 in urban renewal dollars to Town and Country Lanes for significant sidewalk and parking lot upgrades. Outdoor seating and meandering sidewalks will be added, along with natural plants to assist with drainage. The facility’s parking lot will also be redesigned.

And at the regularly-scheduled council meeting at 7 p.m. the group will consider text amendments to Keizer Station that will lift building caps in different areas. Currently Area C – the site of a public battle over whether a big-box store should be allowed to locate there – is limited to 135,000 total square feet. Area D – controlled by a partnership between the Siletz tribe and Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde – is limited to 70,000 square feet. Area B – where the transit station and aforementioned possible doctor’s office are slated – is capped at 80,000 square feet.

The text amendment would allow the council more flexibility to change those caps. The total Keizer Station retail square footage would not exceed 975,000 square feet.

In addition, the compromise worked out at Area C – any retail square footage more than 80,000 square feet would require a corresponding amount of mixed use development – shouldn’t be affected, said Senior Planner Sam Litke. But the 135,000 square foot cap currently on that parcel would be removed.

The text amendments will also strengthen review requirements in Areas B and C.

The Council will also consider whether to place a purchase option on 27.89 acres of land adjacent to Keizer Rapids Park, currently owned by Ella Buchholz. The option agreement call for $50,000 up front for a six-month option, with a possible $10,000 more per month for the following six months. Total purchase price would be $1,355,600, including the house and barn. Urban renewal dollars are slated for the purchase.