Green Mountain development plans continue to move forward

First phase of residential construction could begin this summer

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A development agreement that plans for up to 1,300 homes to be built on 181 acres in Camas will be the subject of an upcoming public hearing.

The public hearing focusing on an agreement with Green Mountain Land LLC will be held Monday, Dec. 15, at 7 p.m., at City Hall, 616 N.E. Fourth Ave., in front of the Camas City Council.

In addition to the residential units, the mixed-use development agreement calls for 8.8 acres of commercial development in the form of an “urban village” with ground floor employment/commercial use. There would also be a community park, open space and trail system.

During last night’s City Council workshop, Community Development Director Phil Bourquin recognized the significant size and scale of the development, but described the document as a “pretty good proposal” for the area that was originally annexed into the city in 2007.

“1,300 units, 181 acres — that’s a large area for Camas. I think it’s the largest single development that we’ve ever had,” he said. “We’ve dealt with 300 or 400 units up by Woodburn Elementary, so by scale this is significantly larger.”

The proposed development area is bordered by Northeast Ingle Road and Northeast Goodwin Road, and includes Green Mountain Golf Course — a use for that will eventually cease, according to Randall B. Printz, the Vancouver attorney representing Green Mountain Land LLC.

Printz said as the development agreement was crafted the area’s natural slopes, critical areas and views of Green Mountain were taken into consideration.

“The strategy throughout this has been to try to take the density off the hill, and relocate it to where it would fit the best, in the manner that it would fit the best,” he said. “That’s why down on the flats, where the golf course is right now, the dirt has been turned over many, many times, and from a development standpoint is highly impacted. That is where you try to put the majority of the development and put the sensitive things up on the hill. That’s what we’ve done.”

The agreement mandates a comprehensive tree preservation plan.

“In addition to the preservation of nearly 5,000 trees, over 2,000 trees will be planted in conjunction with the development of the property consistent with the city’s landscape requirements,” the document states.

As recently as just a few months ago, the proposal called for construction of 1,500 to 1,600 residential units. Through discussions with the developer, Mayor Scott Higgins said, that number was pared down.

“We met with them and let them know that we were fearful that was just too dense for what our community wants to support,” Higgins said. “They worked with us. We came up with this proposal that I think does get enough density for what they need to make their project work, but also fits into what would work well in the community of Camas.”

According to Higgins, the Green Mountain development will be served by the Evergreen School District, not the Camas School District.

The proposed development agreement, which would be valid for 15 years, replaces a previous agreement approved by the City Council in 2008 that would have expired on Dec. 7.

Printz said he intends to submit a planned residential development application to city by the end of the year. Construction on the first phase of the Green Mountain development could begin by the end of summer 2015.

“That’s the goal,” he said.

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