As construction in Keizer remains slow, Chamber ponders what it can do

  By JASON COX Of the Keizertimes Building permits were up for the first time in three years, and a Keizer Chamber of Commerce wants to continue and amplify the trend. Members of the Economic and Government Affairs Committee weren’t displeased with that revelation but at the same time realized the numbers were nowhere near what they were in the late 1990s and early 2000s. And land use applications are at a 12-year low, with only 19 processed in 2010. That’s down from the previous low of 24 in 2009, and down from a high of 73 in 1999. As for building permits, in 1999 529 permits were reviewed by building staff. In 2010 that number was 209, which is still the second-lowest number in the 12-year period obtained by EDGA Chair James Hauge. The lowest? 2009, with just 188 permits reviewed all year. “I think it’s very reflective of our economic times,” Hauge said. “It’s nice to see a slight uptick from 2009 to 2010, but I’ll be curious to see in the future if this trend is going to consistently be at this level or more like 1999.” The group made a splash recently when it voted to oppose Measure 24-314, a local ballot measure that would have limited retail buildings bigger than 65,000 square feet to the currently-developed portion of Keizer Station. The full chamber board...

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