Rushing v. City of Salem

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Land Use Board of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Land Use
  • Date Filed: 12-17-2014
  • Case #: 2014-079
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Opinion by Bassham
  • Full Text Opinion

City of Salem’s decision to approve demolition of Howard Hall by Salem Hospital was reasonable and supported by sufficient evidence, challenges merely pointed to conflicting evidence without support of its own.

Howard Hall is a historic building which was formerly part of the Oregon School for the Blind. Salem Hospital purchased the decommissioned property and has since demolished the other buildings. They applied to the city to demolish Howard Hall and were denied by the historic landmarks commission, but the city council reversed the decision on review and approved the demolition. Rushing, et. al., challenged the sufficiency of the findings on the four requirements of Salem Revised Code 230.090(d)(2) for demolishing a historic building: balance of value to the community, economic necessity,a good faith effort to sell or relocate the resource, and alternative reuse. LUBA denied these arguments, noting that petitioners merely pointed out conflicting arguments, and held that the city’s decisions on these points were reasonable. AFFIRMED.