If you love trees and open space -- who doesn't? -- please consider taking a couple of minutes to help save the 30-acre Meyer Farm property near Trader Joe's in south Salem from being turned into a subdivision.
Back in October 2021 I wrote a blog post about this, "Thirty-acre Meyer Farm property in south Salem may be developed."
If you drive past Trader Joe's on Hilfiker Lane SE, on your left you'll see a surprising urban sight: thirty acres of beautiful undeveloped land.
Unfortunately, there's a decent chance that before too long this property will become thirty acres of much less beautiful developed land.
But not if a group of people devoted to seeing the land remain as natural as possible succeed in their effort to stop the planned subdivision. Consider joining the Friends of The Meyer Farm Facebook group if you share their goal.
On Monday, January 10, 2022, 6 pm, there's a Public Hearing scheduled for the subdivision application (SUB 21-09) as part of a City Council meeting. The councilors will receive testimony from citizens and vote to either approve, approve with conditions, or deny the proposed subdivision at the Meyer Farm.
Requested action(s). Do one, or both, of the following:
1. Tell the City Councilors why you think this proposed subdivision should be denied by submitting your written testimony to the City Registrar by 5:00 p.m. on January 10 by email to [email protected]. You can also submit paper copies at the mailbox outside the City Recorder's office at the Civic Center, 555 Liberty St. SE, Room 205, also by 5:00 p.m. prior to the meeting.
2. Provide virtual comment live via Zoom at the Public Hearing on January 10. In order to testify at the hearing, you will need to sign up between 8:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. the day of the hearing at https://www.cityofsalem.net/Pages/Public-Comment-at-Salem-City-Council-Meeting.aspx. A meeting link will be sent to all persons who signed up to testify.
I'm a member of the Friends of the Meyer Farm Facebook group. These are some of the issues the group has identified which argue against approving the subdivision application. You can mention the issues in your public comment/testimony urging denial of the application.
Traffic. There's concerns about how neighboring streets and intersections will be affected by the traffic generated by the proposed subdivision.
Trees. A tree inventory submitted as part of the development application appears to be out-of-date and incomplete. So there's no way to tell how many trees are planning to be removed, and how many saved.
Wildlife. Fourteen local wildlife species that need the Meyer Farm to survive are protected by local, state, and federal law, along with their required habitats.
History. The Meyer Farm has significant historical value, being one of the last original parcels from the Land Donation Act of 1850. Ownership of the farm can be traced back to the original claimant, Joseph Waldo.
Heritage. A barn that Joseph Waldo built in 1854 is still on the property. It qualifies to be listed on the National Registry of Historic Places.