to: Les Sasaki, Sterling Anderson
from: John Fregonese
subject: Alternative forecasts for the Marion County Framework
date: July 12, 2002
As you know, one of the remaining items of concern among the Marion County Cities is the amount of growth the framework forecasts for any individual city. This memo is intended to clarify the intent of this long-range forecast and the associated land efficiency targets, along with some options for the Board to consider when adopting the urbanization Chapter.
One of the strongest shared values of the Marion County Growth Management Framework process was the desire of the citizens of the county to preserve agricultural land and plan for future growth. The County’s main tools to accomplish this are the coordinated forecast and the urban growth boundary agreements between the County and its cities, the proposed Framework included basic forecasts and land efficiency targets. The approximate capacity inside existing urban growth boundaries has been calculated for all 20 cities, allowing the long range extent of urbanization to be estimated.
While the general concept was well received by most cities, there was some concern about the specific amount forecast. A few cities felt they were forecast to grow too much, while several others felt the forecast was not reflective of their community’s probable growth.
In order to address these concerns, we have added a policy in the draft chapter that requires forecast review every 5 years Additionally, the framework will allow a city that is significantly deviating from its forecast to request a reevaluation at any time.
To provide additional options we have included two possible scenarios in addition to the one included in the draft framework for your consideration. Including the original framework forecast, there are three possibilities, all within the realm of reasonableness for a 50-year forecast. The original forecast to 2050 was made using the forecasts for 2040 from the State of Oregon, and extrapolating to 2050. This is also the forecast that was used for the Willamette Valley Alternative Futures Project.
The City of Salem is currently conducting the Salem Futures project, and therefore we were not able to determine their land needs as we have the other 19 cities of the County. Based on the most recent estimates, the Salem/Keizer area would require about 1,800 acres of land over this period to be added to the urban growth boundary. We have held this expansion constant in all the forecasts. The Salem forecast and land need should be adjusted as soon as Salem is ready to coordinate with the County in the official adoption of the Salem Futures process.
The original forecast was based on a total population for Marion County of 500,400 people in 2050 (the 2000 census population was 248,834). The first forecast used as a basis the potential capacity inside each boundary, the results of the workshops, input from the cities, and the selected growth scenario from the process. This forecast would require about 3,200 acres of land outside current Urban Growth Boundaries to be used for urbanization, assuming Salem would require 1,800 acres.
In the second forecast, we modified the basic forecast to reflect the proportionate share of growth the cities received over the last 10 years, while keeping the forecast total at 500,400. This led to the Salem/Keizer forecast falling from 342,000 to 326,000, while rapidly growing cities such as Aumsville and Woodburn increased their forecast amounts. This forecast would require about 4,032 acres of UGB expansion, again assuming Salem requires 1,800 acres.
A third scenario would designate the larger of the forecasts from each of the two prior forecasts. This would increase the County total from 500,400 to 522,224. These differences are within 5%, well within the expected accuracy of a 50-year forecast.
The land need only slightly increases to 4,161 acres. The majority of land added to the urban growth boundaries, other than Salem/Keizer would be in the Gervais-Woodburn-Hubbard corridor, which would add a combined 1,445 acres of land.
The following is a table that compares the forecasts and estimated land needs.