City Council Enters into Development Agreement for Esplanade and Main
Written By: Francisca Benitez, H&N Staff Reporter
The Klamath Falls City Council Monday voted to enter into a development agreement with Confluence Klamath Falls, for the Balsiger block property at the corner of Main and Esplanade streets.
“Currently, the developer envisions a hotel, rooftop restaurant, townhouses/condos, retail space, apartments and some open gathering spaces,” the agenda states.
The city will pay up to $749,000 to help develop the property, which was the site most recently of the Balsiger Ford building, demolished in 2016. The developer will contribute multiple millions of dollars, according to the agenda.
This is not the first time a developer has shown interest in the property. The city was previously in negotiations with Portland-based developer, Tokola Properties.
The city has been in negotiations for several months with Confluence Klamath Falls, under its Portland-based parent company, Project^, which has local Klamath investors interested in the property. Project^ formed the LLC Confluence Klamath Falls specifically for this project.
The council also voted to adopt an ordinance that will limit camping on private property.
The ordinance allows camping on private property for seven days without a permit but stays between eight and 21 days require a permit which must be posted on the entrance to the property.
Camping for more than 21 days in a 12 month period is prohibited.
According to the ordinance, camping is limited to the property owner or those who have written permission from the property owner, and no more than one shelter and a maximum of four people are allowed.
One section of the ordinance was taken out at the request of Councilman Matt Dodson. The section would have required campers to have proof of a porta-potty or gray water sump or recycled gray water.
“I don’t think, when I think about our city, we want to see a porta-potty placed in someone’s backyard,” Dodson said.
He said most people will probably use the restroom on the property they are camping on or use public restrooms so that part of the ordinance is not necessary.
The council unanimously voted to omit the section regarding porta-potties and to adopt the ordinance.
The council also unanimously voted to change the wording in the downtown parking regulations, an issue that has been the topic of discussion at the last two meetings.
Currently, businesses only need to pay fees for employees who work regular business hours, which excludes people who work between 5 p.m. and 8 a.m., the change ends the distinction and businesses will pay for all employees the same.