Urban Tribe - Ride with your kids in front.

City denies Springwater development appeal

Posted by on October 2nd, 2006 at 8:35 am

[Scan of appeal decision mailed out Saturday]
Editor’s note: Lines drawn by my daughter 😉

The City of Portland Hearings Office* has denied the land use appeal of Shawn Karambelas. Karambelas is the business owner who wanted to develop a parcel of land just south of OMSI without including plans for public trail access on the waterfront.

This decision — which was mailed out on Saturday — comes in response to an appeal filed by Karambelas and property owner Wayne Kingsley over the initial rejection of their permit back in June.

This denial of their appeal of that decision was based on evidence presented at a public hearing that took place on August 16.

It’s been nearly six months since this story broke and given what I know about the current owner of this property I don’t think we’ve heard the end of this yet. I’ll try and keep you posted on any developments (no pun intended).

To review previous decisions and documentation, stay tuned to this page on the City of Portland website (look for file number LU 05-178171 GW).

*[Editor’s note: I initially reported that this appeal was denied by the Bureau of Development Services but I edited the post after being corrected by Evan Manvel (see comment below).]

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Thank you — Jonathan

  • sh October 2, 2006 at 9:30 am

    Great news! Thanks so much for giving this bandwidth and making it so very easy to lend a voice against proposals like these. It’s difficult sometimes to be a diligent citizen while just simply livin’ life.

    Wil SK will roll over with this setback? Doubt it, but it’s heartening to see this decision from BDS. Hooray!

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  • tonyt October 2, 2006 at 9:52 am


    I love this city!

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  • Evan Manvel, BTA October 2, 2006 at 11:38 am

    To clarify: this isn’t the BDS denying it. BDS had already denied it.

    The Hearings Officer is an independent person given responsibility to interpret the laws and evidence, a quasi-judge. Oregon land use law sets up a system whereby local decisions can be made by staff, appealed to Hearings Officers, and then to the Land Use Board of Appeals (and then to an official court: the Court of Appeals and Supreme Court).

    But… yay!

    Thanks to all who testified, and for Jonathan for covering this issue. Once I review the decision I’ll probably write something more at the BTA blog.

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  • Jonathan Maus October 2, 2006 at 11:41 am

    Thanks for that clarification Evan…I’ll change the post and we’ll stay tuned for more coverage on your blog.

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  • elljay October 3, 2006 at 7:50 am

    Thanks to all who wrote letters and testified!

    Interesting to compare SK to the concept on the boards by his neighbor. That proposal, which was detailed in Randy Gragg’s column in Sunday’s Oregonian, embraces the river, the environment, and public access.

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  • amanda October 3, 2006 at 2:33 pm

    I’m glad to hear that this proposal has not gone through. However, I’d like to see some creative thinking come out of this. There is currently no commerce along the trail. I understand that we love the idea of a peaceful greenway but how great would it be to pick up a bottle of water and a powerbar at a cafe along the water. Paddle up and have a coffee in the morning? Meet your cycling or running buddies at the cafe on the water?

    The city should buy the property, make the trail and then sell some parcels off to business which would enhance the trail life down there.

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  • Cate October 3, 2006 at 2:40 pm

    Great idea, amanda, but I think they’d have to change the zoning in that area…

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  • elljay October 3, 2006 at 5:00 pm

    Amanda – Like the brand or not, within a year, there will be a Starbucks in the “Portland Boathouse” building by the Hawthorne Bridge, adjacent to the trail. (the one that is gutted right now).

    The City has also tried to get proposals to turn the waterfront fire station by the Hawthorne Br. into a restaurant, but have not gotten any viable proposals.

    The area where SK was proposing is zoned industrial, and commercial can only be a minor use of the property, so it would be hard to do a cafe or minimart there.

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  • Evan Manvel, BTA October 5, 2006 at 3:04 pm

    Here’s a more detailed analysis after reading the denial.


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  • Scott Mizée February 24, 2007 at 5:52 am

    elljay pointed out the
    article that Randy Gragg wrote in the Oregonian

    I work for the architecture firm that is doing the work and it has been really interesting to see how the owner is embracing bicycle and non-motorized river traffic in his proposal. It is really an exciting project! I can’t wait for it to be built.

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