Southwest Medford LLC. v. City of Medford

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Land Use Board of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Land Use
  • Date Filed: 05-19-2014
  • Case #: 2014-006
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Opinion by Holstun
  • Full Text Opinion

A revision to a previously approved planned unit development seeking to remove a voluntarily agreed-upon condition may be denied if the revision does not comply with all other relevant approval criteria.

Southwest Medford LLC’s (Southwest) predecessor agreed in 2006 to improve a substandard road in its planned unit development (PUD), in response to concerns from the neighborhood. In 2013, Southwest sought to revise their tentative plat for phase 4, seeking to install a barrier across the road and remove the condition requiring improvement. They were denied by the planning commission and the city council, and appealed to LUBA.

Southwest first contended that the voluntary agreement to the condition should not estop them from seeking revision if unrelated to the criteria governing PUD revisions. While LUBA agreed that removal of the condition would be appropriate if the revision complied with all criteria, they upheld the city’s justification of the denial under Medford Land Development Code 10.270(4), which requires that new streets in a division “be laid out to be consistent with existing and planned streets.” Southwest next argued that the 2006 application was in fact three consolidated applications, challenging statements made in the city council’s findings conflating the three. LUBA noted that the city was wrong to so conflate these, but that this would be at most harmless error considering that the road condition was one of land division approval, sufficient as grounds to deny the revision. Finally, citing Koontz v. St. Johns River Water Management District, Southwest argued that the city erred by failing to conduct the rough proportionality analysis required under Dolan v. City of Tigard before requiring off-site improvements. LUBA assumed without deciding that the road condition did require a proportionality analysis, but found that the city council had performed this adequately in a three-page analysis from Public Works in 2011. AFFIRMED.