OSU-Cascades looks to other campuses for advice

Neighborhood task force discusses expansion plans

OSU-Cascades task force at work

BEND, Ore. - A lesson Thursday as OSU-Cascades Neighborhood Task Force looks to others for help for its 4-year expansion.

It's been months of expressed excitement -- and concern from surrounding neighbors.

On Thursday, the Livability Task Force took a closer look at how other communities responded to a 4-year campus being built in their town.

Some Westside residents have been skeptical about the potential impact on quality of life in their neighborhood, including traffic, housing and parking.

Now that they're learning what others have done, the question becomes, how can Bend adopt it and promote livability on the west side?

"Not every situation is the same," said Ken Schofield of the Century West Neighborhood Association. "We were talking to people from another university and we found out that, no, it's not the same. However, it is knowledge gained."

Michael McLandress with the Old Bend Neighborhood Association added, "There's no one community that can solve all our problems, so the great thing is with our task force, we are able to go out and ask these questions specifically."

University officials say feedback still ranges from pure excitement to questioning why the site between Chandler Avenue and Mt. Washington Drive was selected in the first place.

But it's the feedback from other colleges they are eager to hear.

"It's important for us to look at the mistakes that other campuses have made," said Kelly Sparks, OSU-Cascades' vice president of finance. "If someone has done it already, we can learn from history. We don't need to replicate it. We can create our own issues, so to speak -- we'll create something new."

OSU-Cascades is doing its "due diligence" on the 10-acre parcel it bought in the fall. It could take until March to finish the review of the 46-acre parcel.

To learn more about the plans, visit

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