Special Coverage of SK Northwest

SK Northwest, a retailer of jet-skis and personal watercraft, wants to develop a parcel of land on the Willamette riverfront just south of OMSI. They are fighting to be exempt from putting a trail easement through their property.

Browse the stories below for more coverage of this issue…

SK Northwest builds new trail on Willamette, but gap remains

Posted on July 21st, 2011 at 8:12 am.

The newest section of trail along the east side of the Willamette River has been built as part of the new SK Northwest retail store and warehouse.
(Photos © J. Maus)


What’s next for the Springwater Trail? Filling in the gaps

Posted on December 21st, 2009 at 10:12 am.

Three Bridges opening celebration
The Springwater Corridor Trail is
a major commute thoroughfare
and recreational facility.
(Photo © J. Maus)

The Springwater Corridor Trail is the closest thing Portland has to a bicycle superhighway.

When the trail is complete, you will be able to walk, run, skate, or ride your bike from the Steel Bridge all the way out beyond Gresham without ever sharing the road with a motorized vehicle. For now, only two major gaps remain, both in inner Portland, where you must exit the trail and wind through city streets.

The southern gap routes you through quiet, residential streets in Sellwood from SE Umatilla close to the river to SE 19th. The northern gap, from the current trailhead at SE Ivon to the beginning of the Eastbank Esplanade at OMSI, is by far the worst of the two, crossing through a major construction zone and the entrance to a gravel depot, creating a safety hazard and a signage and enforcement conundrum.

So what is the current status of these gaps?


The SK Northwest saga is over: Property owner gives up on trail fight

Posted on September 5th, 2008 at 4:50 pm.

“We look forward to working with SK Northwest and the City as the development moves forward.”
— BTA’s metro-area advocate Emily Gardner

After a protracted legal battle that first came to light back in April of 2006, a Willamette riverfront property owner whose parcel lies in a key gap between two popular trails has relented and agreed to allow a trail to be built on their property.

The news comes from the BTA’s metro-area advocate Emily Gardner via the BTA Blog (emphasis mine):


BTA: Appeals court says SK Northwest must build trail

Posted on February 19th, 2008 at 12:25 pm.

portland spirit at end of esplanade
A trail to nowhere, for now.
(Photo © J. Maus)

The BTA reports great news in the ongoing saga of SK Northwest and their battle against building a key piece of trail across their property on the Willamette Riverfront just south of OMSI.

The BTA’s Michelle Poyourow writes on their blog that the Oregon Court of Appeals has struck down SK Northwest’s latest appeal.

According to Poyourow, SK Northwest’s next move could be to try and get their case heard by the Oregon Supreme Court. But, she writes, “the Supreme Court gets to choose which appeals it hears and which it declines.”


SK Northwest files for (yet another) appeal

Posted on December 3rd, 2007 at 2:43 pm.

[Updated: 11/3, 10:05pm]

As reported by Emily Gardner of the BTA on Friday, SK Northwest has filed an appeal with the Oregon Court of Appeals.

It seems SK Northwest, who wants to develop a riverfront parcel for their personal watercraft business, can’t accept a recent Land Use Board of Appeals opinion that the city’s demand for a trail across the property is justified (and constitutional).


SK Northwest will appeal yet again

Posted on July 31st, 2007 at 10:06 am.

After it seemed like the final nail had been put in the coffin on SK Northwest’s development proposal, they have announced yet another appeal.

A quick look back at my coverage shows that this would be their fifth appeal since June 2006.


BTA claims victory in SK Northwest battle

Posted on July 16th, 2007 at 12:31 pm.

The Bicycle Transportation Alliance (BTA) reports a victory over SK Northwest after SK’s development application appeal was denied Friday by the City of Portland Hearings Office.

At issue was whether or not SK Northwest has to include a bike/ped trail along their proposed riverfront development.

According to the BTA, SK’s most recent appeal was shot down because it,


SK Northwest persists, appeal hearing tomorrow

Posted on June 5th, 2007 at 10:11 am.

SK Northwest — one of Oregon’s largest dealers of personal watercraft and ATV’s — refuses to give up on their plans to develop property on the Willamette (without granting riverfront trail access) just south of the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI).


One year later, SK Northwest denied again

Posted on April 19th, 2007 at 3:14 pm.

“A trail corridor must be provided to address transportation impacts.”
-Bureau of Development Services.

The Portland Bureau of Development Services has issued another denial for SK Northwest. It’s been one year since I first broke the story of the company’s plans to develop a facility along the Willamette River, just south of OMSI.


SK Northwest tries again for Springwater development

Posted on March 12th, 2007 at 11:34 am.

Proposed development area.
Click to enlarge graphic

SK Northwest, a Portland-based retailer of jet-skis and personal watercraft, has submitted another proposal to develop a key parcel of Willamette riverfront land.

The proposal was submitted to the Bureau of Development Services (BDS) on March 1st and once again, it does not include plans for a trail.

You might recall the long and winding saga of this company’s attempts to develop land on the Willamette riverfront just south of OMSI. I’ve covered the story extensively since breaking the news almost one year ago.