Hallinan Woods must be protected
"It is true that some people look upon such woods merely as a troublesome encumbrance standing in the way of more profitable use, but future generations will not feel so and will bless the men who were wise enough to get such woods preserved."
— John Olmsted
Hallinan Woods is a four-acre wooded property owned by the City of Lake Oswego, just north of Hallinan Elementary School. Every day, dozens of residents walk this path, listening to the creek flow and the birds chirp, and sometimes watching bald eagles taking a fishing break high up in the canopy.
The local friends group, Friends of the Hallinan Heights Woods, partners with the Hallinan Heights Neighborhood Association, Lake Oswego Parks and Recreation Department, the Oswego Lake Watershed Council, scout troops, church groups, students from Hallinan El-
ementary, etc. to remove ivy and other invasive plants, and plant native
Adjacent to Hallinan Woods is a two-acre privately owned property proposed for six new single-family homes. Known as the Yates property, it borders Hallinan Woods on two sides. The city is considering purchasing this property to add to Hallinan Woods. As friends groups from throughout the city, we wholly support this effort. This is a gem, an ecological continuation of the woods. Development will significantly harm the natural resources on the existing city-owned
Protecting the Yates property and adding it to Hallinan Woods will:
— Conserve wildlife habitat. Hallinan Woods is located within a habitat cluster as identified in the Parks Plan 2025, approved by City Council.
— Maintain open space — already at a premium in Lake Oswego.
— Support the experience of people who run, walk and bike this trail from the Hallinan Heights neighborhood and beyond, including the McVey-South Shore path. In addition, Metro is planning a trail along the Willamette River, and from the Willamette River to the Tualatin River — right through Hallinan Woods, making it a future regional destination.
— Protect water quality in Hallinan Creek, which flows into the Willamette River.
— Contribute to efforts by the Lake Oswego School District to develop outdoor curriculum. Hallinan Woods is an ideal learning laboratory where students from Lake Oswego schools can take field trips to study a seasonal wetlands, perennial creek, native plants and wildlife. This idea is currently in development by a consortium of organizations (The Lake Oswego School District, the Oswego Lake Watershed Council and the Lake Oswego Sustainability Network).
This property is perfectly situated to serve a higher purpose for residents throughout Lake Oswego and beyond. Please join us in protecting Hallinan Woods — for all citizens, for future generations, for wildlife habitat, for clean air and water, and for our Lake Oswego way of life — and in applauding city councilors for taking the next step on this visionary project.
Barbara and Jim Fisher are Lake Oswego residents writing on behalf of: Friends of Hallinan Heights Woods; Friends of Iron Mountain; Friends of Southwood Park; Friends of Waluga Parks; Paul Lyons, Springbrook Park; and Friends of Lily Bay Natural Area
Quality local journalism takes time and money, which comes, in part, from paying readers. If you enjoy articles like this one, please consider supporting us.
(It costs just a few cents a day.)