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Developers donate 14 acres to Talent for open space

The city of Talent will soon be the owner of nearly 14 donated acres to be used for open space and possibly a park.

Talent City Council Wednesday voted to accept the land from Clearview Corporation. Signing of a warranty deed by both parties will complete the process.

“This has been in the city’s park master plan for a number of years,” said City Manager Tom Corrigan. “We can now begin updating the master plan as the owners.”

Officials had told Clearview principals nearly 10 years ago of their desire to add that land, some of which is adjacent to Bear Creek, to the city’s recreational space inventory.

Clearview is a development of 56 homes and nine commercial lots east of Highway 99, west of Bear Creek and south of Suncrest Road. Work on the project began in the last decade, but had been slowed by the economic downturn.

Clearview principals knew then-owner Howard DeYoung wanted to sell the property, which had been mined for sand and aggregate. Clearview completed the purchase in the last decade.

“It took a long time to work out the specifics of the donation,” said managing partner Evan Archerd. “We are happy to that we were able to find a way to accomplish that this year.”

Clearview retains the right to use the property for drainage, detention and retention of storm water generated by the development.

One parcel between the Oak Valley 55-plus planned community and the former Talent Truck Stop that includes part of Wagner Creek will provide access to the area from Valley View Road. City crews currently must access the area through Oak Valley. An informal path that is utilized already exists there, Councilman Ryan Pedersen said.

Development of the parcel that includes Bear Creek may be limited because parts of it are wetland, although trails might be built there, Community Development Director Zac Moody said.

Improvements could provide a link from Valley View Road to Suncrest Road, as the city already owns a parcel adjacent to the donated area’s north end and Suncrest Road. City public works facilities are located on part of that land, a former golf driving range known as Whacker’s Hollow. The master plan also lists the former golf range area for park development.

An improved economy has boosted Clearview building. Eleven houses are under construction. When those are completed, there will be 24 residential lots left. House prices range from $230,000 to $270,000, said Archerd.

“The ones that are going up are actually pre-sold,” said Archerd. “We’ll build these 11 through the winter, then we intend to build some more.”

Clearview was envisioned as a place where residents could walk to a variety of services, said Archerd. A market and restaurants adjacent to Highway 99 exists on one of nine commercial lots. A bank and pharmacy are just across the highway. Four of the commercial lots are designated for mixed used incorporating residences.

Building on a second commercial lot located between the existing businesses and the Anjou Club apartments has been approved. The corporation is negotiating with tenants and will begin building when leases are in place, Archerd said. 

Tony Boom is an Ashland freelance writer. Reach him at tboomwriter@gmail.com.