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Government

Holding the Line in Oregon

Oregon’s land-use policies have preserved farmland and led to smart urban growth.

 

In 1967, Charles and Ellen McClure purchased 70 scenic acres on the edge of Newberg, Ore., about 20 miles from Portland. Back then, Newberg was a sleepy farm town surrounded by hazelnut orchards. Today, it’s the gateway to the Willamette Valley’s renowned wine country.

In 2007, the McClures sought permission to develop their farmland as high-end housing. They faced one big hurdle. Their acreage sits just outside an imaginary line that divides urban Newberg from the rural countryside. Under...


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