A 2016 Housing Needs Analysis revealed the City will need to supply at least 1,300 new single-family detached homes over the next 20 years. In 2018, the City will apply to Metro for an Urban Growth Boundary (UGB) expansion west of the now-developing South Hillsboro area, and immediately south of the Witch Hazel Village community. This UGB expansion request area, referred to as Witch Hazel Village South (WHVS), is 150 acres in unincorporated Washington County with 12 landowners.
Figure 1: Witch Hazel Village South Overview
WHVS is located within a 940-acre Urban Reserve. Urban Reserves are lands designated by Metro as suitable for accommodating urban development expected to occur over a 50-year period. In addition to the 150-acre Witch Hazel component, the remaining Urban Reserve includes The Reserve Golf Course (311 acres) and South Urban Reserve Area (479 acres). The current project will focus primarily on the feasibility and impacts associated with development of WHVS, where the largest landowners have been working together to assemble property and plan for future development. No UGB expansion is currently under consideration in the South Urban Reserve Area or The Reserve Golf Course.
The City is seeking to urbanize WHVS based on its proximity to existing city limits, infrastructure and urban services. The largest property owners within the area have expressed support for this expansion. By incorporating WHVS, the City is also advancing two major goals in the 2035 Community Plan: reduce commuter congestion; and increase the percentage of Hillsboro workers who call Hillsboro home. Preliminary analysis of the WHVS project suggests it will help close the housing needs deficit by adding approximately 700 additional residences.
Prior to applying for UGB expansion, cities are required to complete a Metro Title 11 Concept Plan that provides a framework for future growth and development. The Concept Plan must address land use, natural resources, impact on contiguous land areas, and the general location, phasing and financing of transportation and other infrastructure improvements. The City has initiated preliminary planning, and will soon host several community meetings to review findings and seek input on key aspects of the Draft Concept Plan.
Should the UGB expansion be approved, additional public process will occur as part of adopting Comprehensive Plan amendments for the area. No vertical development will be allowed nor will any property within WHVS be allowed to annex into the City until Comprehensive Plan amendments and a finance plan have been adopted by the Hillsboro City Council. Development is not anticipated to begin until 2024 when anticipated improvements are made to Tualatin Valley Highway and the surrounding transportation system.
Concept planning for WHVS that accounts for the larger Urban Reserve will proceed under a set of draft guiding principles (see inset). The following provides a general overview of plan aspects to be discussed with landowners and the larger community in upcoming meetings.
The City envisions developing Witch Hazel Village South primarily with medium- and low-density detached single-family housing units. This will provide opportunities for diverse housing choices that meet the needs and preferences of all ages, abilities, cultures, and incomes.
The City envisions high-quality transportation facilities designed to serve motor vehicles, bicyclists and pedestrians. The City would extend Brookwood Avenue from its current terminus in Witch Hazel Village North through the plan area to River Road, consistent with the City Transportation System Plan and Metro Regional Transportation Plan. The Brookwood extension is anticipated to reduce traffic congestion on TV Highway while also providing a new “collector” road to serve travel demand within the new WHVS arterial system.
Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces
The City anticipates installing two neighborhood parks, per Hillsboro Parks and Recreation standards, and a greenway trail along Gordon Creek with a connection to the planned Crescent Park Greenway. Residents would also have access to nearby Rood Bridge Park. The City also anticipates connecting new WHVS neighborhoods via a system of smaller trails.
Schools WHVS lies within the existing boundaries of Hillsboro High and South Meadows Middle School. The Hillsboro School District would need to extend the current service boundary for Witch Hazel Elementary School to serve future WHVS residents. The District does not anticipate any capacity challenges at any of the schools.
A natural resource inventory has been prepared for WHVS, and a significant natural resource plan and additional field work and analysis will be required prior to any future development.
Transportation, Public Utilities, and Services Financing
The City is currently preparing a report to describe funding mechanisms for transportation, public utility, and service improvements in the WHVS study area. The City does not subsidize these improvements for residential or commercial-retail development in UGB expansion areas.
Key Dates and Project Phasing
The following provides a general timeline and flow of anticipated activities. Additional information, key meeting dates and other opportunities for input will be posted to this website as the project evolves. Affected property owners will receive notices of key decisions and meetings by mail.
Phase I: Concept Planning
- Property Owners’ Meeting - October 5, 2017
- Community Meeting #1- November 14, 2017
- Planning Commission Work Session #1 - January 10, 2018
- Community Meeting #2 - March 15, 2018
- Planning Commission Work Session #2 - March 28, 2018
- Planning Commission Public Hearing - April 11, 2018
- City Council Work Session - May 1, 2018
Phase II: Metro Deliberation
- Metro Application Due Spring 2018
- Metro Discussion Summer 2018
- Metro Decision Fall 2018
Pending the Metro decision, additional project phases are expected to include:
- Phase III: Develop Comprehensive Planning Amendments and Finance Plan
- Phase IV: Adopt Comprehensive Plan Amendments and Finance Plan
- Phase V: Development
For additional information, please click on the link to the project Frequently-Asked-Questions document, or contact: Laura Weigel, City of Hillsboro Long Range Planning Manager at 503-681-6156 or firstname.lastname@example.org