Tour highlighted area's revival

From a childcare center to possible track expansion


October 19, 2023 | View PDF

People on a guided tour celebrating progress in rebuilding after the Holiday Farm Fire found a lot of positive energy in the air last week.

Among the tour stops was the Little Eagles Childcare Center now open at the McKenzie River Community School campus.

Highlights of the 2023 Tour included an opportunity to look at design drawings for the new O’Brien Memorial Library - where groundbreaking will occur on October 27th.

Just a short walk from there crews were busy drying in the walls and roof of the Upper McKenzie Rural Fire District’s new Blue River Fire Station. It is located right next to the lot where a groundbreaking ceremony for the McKenzie Valley Wellness Clinic was held just a day before the tour.

The McKenzie Community Land Trust’s newly acquired land was another stop - at the corner of Rose and McCauley. There, Brandi Crawford Ferguson with the non-profit detailed plans to build 6 affordable/firewise homes in 2024 with their “Rose Street Cottages” development partner, DevNW.

Up at the corner of Rose and Blue River Drive, Tony Casad was performing double duty - outlining the recovery and future visions for the Blue River Park. He also provided an update on the proposed community wastewater system for the town, which could include using part of the park’s acreage for a drain field.

Just down Blue River’s “Main Street,” Melanie Stanley had a chance to share the design for the Meyer General Store - which is now likely to be the downtown area’s first business to be rebuilt. Her plans include bringing back the OLCC-authorized liquor store, along with general grocery-type items at affordable prices.

During the lunch break at the McKenzie Community Track and Field, people learned about the non-profits will share their vision for economic development. t

The tour wound up with a walkabout and an overview of the adjoining Three Sisters Meadow property. Community “listening sessions” have begun and people are being encouraged to brainstorm ideas about what might happen there.

In his presentation, Zach Galloway explained that the wastewater issue could play a large part in what could happen there, particularly if part of the land would need to be set aside to accommodate a drain field for the proposed community wastewater projects.

To view a video of what might happen at the Three Sisters site, go to:


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