DRC approves proposals for two senior living projects
Lake Oswego Review
Developers will expand Mary's Woods and add a four-story development at Boones Ferry Road and Kruse Way
December 9th 2015
Lake Oswego's Development Review Commission unanimously approved plans for two major senior living communities Monday: a 229-unit development at Boones Ferry Road and Kruse Way, and a mixed-use project that will add 198 residential units and 40,250 square feet of commercial space to Mary's Woods.
Commissioners heard little or no opposition to either proposal, although representatives of the Waluga Neighborhood Association did voice their concerns about the planned removal of 52 trees at The Springs at Lake Oswego.
"We are saddened that 60 percent of the trees have to be removed from the perimeter of the development, particularly the ones along Kruse Way and Boones Ferry Road," association co-chairwoman Cindy Maddox said. "Hopefully, mitigation choices for the tree loss will quickly grow to enhance the current natural and woodsy look from these streets and corner."
In a letter submitted to the DRC, Maddox also said neighbors were worried about onsite parking during and after construction. But she said the association supported a proposal from The Springs Living LLC for a smaller development on the property last year, and "we look forward to when this new senior facility is open for business."
The proposed four-story development, which was designed by Ray Yancy of Myhre Group Architects, will include a mix of independent living, assisted living and memory care units and two levels of underground parking. The entrance to the facility will be on Kruse Way Place, with landscaped sidewalks along all sides; a plaza with a fountain and seating areas will anchor the corner at Kruse Way and Boones Ferry Road.
Meanwhile, much of the discussion about the planned addition to Mary's Woods centered around increased traffic likely to be generated on Highway 43 by the addition of residential units, a "commons" with kitchen and dining facilities, a 9,000-square-foot wellness center, and retail and commercial space.
Developers of the town center-like expansion say it is designed to be a place where residents of the senior living community can connect with neighbors, with a 65-foot tower designed to act as a beacon for surrounding communities.
Two residents who live across the street from the retirement community on Brookhurst Drive testified that Highway 43 is already impassable during peak hours and especially dangerous for pedestrians.
But commissioners said an analysis reviewed and approved by the city's traffic engineer and the Oregon Department of Transportation showed that additional traffic generated by the project is expected to be well below the limits authorized by the area's overall development plan.
Still, commissioners directed city staff to work with Mary's Woods to explore the installation of crossing lights or other options to address residents' concerns.
Both development projects will go before the DRC for final approval on Dec. 21. City planners say construction could begin at both sites in late 2016, although that is contingent on completion of the planning and permitting process.