Tribal Government & News

Tribe, Wood Village discussing sale of part of racetrack property

04.01.2019 Dean Rhodes Tribal Council, Economic development

By Dean Rhodes

Smoke Signals editor

The Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde and city of Wood Village are in negotiations to possibly sell 4.6 acres of the 31.5-acre former Multnomah Greyhound Park property.

The Tribe purchased the former racetrack in east Multnomah County in 2015 and announced in August 2018 that it intended not to develop the property, but instead put it on the market.

The Wood Village City Council voted unanimously on Jan. 22 for City Manager Bill Peterson to enter into negotiations to purchase the land near the intersection of Wood Village Boulevard and Arata Road.

City plans are to transform the property into a public park, with the recreation area named on behalf of the Grand Ronde Tribe. The site contains mostly wetlands, which cannot be developed.

Since negotiations are ongoing, a sale price has not been released. The Gresham Outlook reported that Wood Village has approximately $650,000 in parks systems development charges available that may be used to purchase park land.

Tribal Council meet in executive session to discuss an offer from Wood Village on Monday, March 4, but the issue has not been brought up in Legislative Action Committee or a Tribal Council meeting yet.

Tribal Council Chief of Staff Stacia Hernandez said during the Other Business portion of the Wednesday, March 20, Tribal Council meeting that the Tribe is re-assessing its decision to sell the property because it is in an Opportunity Zone.

“We are revisiting plans right now and currently under some evaluations at the moment,” she said. “We are working with the city of Wood Village to sell them a portion of the wetlands, which should hopefully satisfy some of the open-space requirements on the property, which is good news for any developer that potentially might be interested.”

Hernandez said the Tribe has received interest in the property, but that it has not been actively marketed because of the re-evaluation about what the Tribe wants to do with the property.

The Tribe hired Bruce Thomas as its new Economic Development Department director in November 2018.

The Tribe purchased the property in December 2015. The dilapidated site, which had not been used for dog racing since 2004, was listed for sale at $11.2 million. The Tribe purchased the property at less than listed value and was attempting to sell it for $17.9 million.

In addition to the purchase price, the Tribe signed an almost $900,000 contract with Konell Construction & Demolition Corp. of Sandy in April 2016 to demolish and clear structures on the site.