Agendas and Minutes

Ashland Parks & Recreation Commission (View All)

Parks Commission Tour of Westwood Property Minutes

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

City of Ashland





August 12, 2008



Present:         Commissioners Eggers, Gardiner, Lewis, Noraas; Director Robertson; Superintendent Teige

Absent:       Commissioner Rosenthal; Superintendent Gies


Gardiner called the tour to order at 10:05 a.m. at the Westwood Street park property.


Robertson welcomed all in attendance, including commissioners, staff, neighbors, and friends of the park property. He said the land had potential, including the option of selling a two-acre portion of the nearly ten acres for use in purchasing park land on Clay Street. He said neighbors, residents, and friends of the area had expressed concern about this proposed option and he displayed maps of both the Westwood area and the 2002-2012 Open Space Plan.

Public Input

Darren Borgias distributed a concept master plan for “Westwood Park.” Neighbors expressed strong concern about the proposed sale of land, stating that it was a valuable community resource containing a variety of natural elements. They also expressed concern about being shut out of the process and said the proposed plan demonstrated a breach of trust within the community. A neighbor stated that a sale of the two-acre parcel would degrade the neighborhood’s potential and the woodland corridor.

Discussion Among Commissioners

Commissioners discussed what two-acre portion of land they might consider selling (north or south) and how the proceeds could be used (acquisition and/or development).

Lewis stated that the Westwood property was obtained by the city when it was designated as park land but it was not considered a particularly valuable piece of land unto itself while the Clay Street parcel was identified as valuable as it was located in an area needing more park land.

Gardiner said the commission was considering the sale because every year there was less property—as identified on the Open Space Plan—available for sale within the city limits and the commission lacked funding for land acquisitions. He said the commission was obligated to explore options such as the Westwood parcel, and that they viewed the parks system from a city-wide perspective.

Eggers said she was not committed to a sale but was committed to looking at the Westwood parcel as an option.

Noraas said the commission wished to explore options and, while committed to conducting open and public discussions, was facing a budget crisis. She said the commission also had to think about and speak out for those community members lacking the resources to speak to their own needs.

Next Steps

Staff was directed to place a marker in the area under consideration.

ADJOURNMENT – By consensus, Gardiner adjourned the tour at 11:15 a.m.

Respectfully submitted, Susan Dyssegard, Ashland Parks and Recreation

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