Re-Envisioning Eugene

Neal Cassidy (“High-Density Hell,” Letters, 6/20) has lambasted the ugly building spree in Eugene. Susan Hoffman (“Welcome to the Occupation,” Letters, 6/27) has pointed out that the composition of the Eugene Planning Commission is heavily (and illegally) packed with five (out of seven) commissioners professionally connected to the building trades, with ugly results.

In 2015, Seattle-based Evergreen Group plunked down 192 “market-rate” apartments (one-bedroom: $1,300) along River Road. Its three-story blocks loom over the old suburban houses, and its cars clog the narrow lanes. Evergreen recently sold this monstrosity for $17 million.

Now Evergreen has its eye on another River Road lot, just off the Willamette River Greenway, again overlooking a peaceful suburban community. It wants to impose 94 units and 128 asphalt parking spaces on three acres, covering some of the richest soil in Lane County.

Strangely, Homes for Good was told it could not build affordable housing there because of a flood plain issue, but the flood plain disappeared after Evergreen hired its own surveyors. Pat Farr, county commissioner for River Road, says “Envision Eugene” has tied his hands, and now it’s mandatory to build giant apartment blocks everywhere.

Let’s untie all the hands, put all the cards on the table and rethink “Envision Eugene.” Let’s envision our town growing prettier with time, instead of uglier and our government working for the people who live here, instead of for out-of-state developers.

Let’s envision a government that truly cares about the climate, sustainability and the environment.

Christopher Logan


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