Land Use Board of Appeals ruling overturns Linn County rezoning efforts

1000 Friends assisted residents in Linn County to successfully appeal an effort to rezone forestlands for a subdivision.

Overview: A developer wanted to rezone 108 acres of Farm/Forest-zoned land in Linn County to build a 20-lot subdivision. Although there are a few homes in the immediate vicinity, the property is generally bordered on three sides by forest land managed for timber production. 1000 Friends stepped in to help neighbors oppose the plan, which would have allowed 5-acre lots — effectively turning the land into a 20-lot subdivision. 

Our win: 1000 Friends prevailed on its claim that the county could not ignore its own protections for big game habitat. While the existing protections would allow one or two clustered homes in an area, the higher dwelling densities on 5-acre lots that the developer wanted would have degraded the habitat, and prevented big game — elk — from using the habitat. 

The county cannot declare that an area is big game habitat and then actively try to undermine the habitat designation by removing its protections.

The ruling:

  • Preserved over 100 acres of forestland; 
  • Protected valuable habitat for big game, hunting, and wildlife viewing;
  • Reduces the risk of wildfire on nearby forest lands by preventing expansion of low-density housing in the wildland urban interface; 
  • Reduces urban and residential sprawl

Click here to view media coverage on the ruling at the Capital Press