Frequently Asked Questions

Why change the county boundary for Bonny Slope West?

Bonny Slope West landowners, Metro, and Multnomah and Washington counties have worked co­operatively to find a solution that delivers on the region's 2002 commitment to facilitate residential development in this area. In this unique situation, moving the county boundary to bring Bonny Slope West into Washington County is necessary because:

  • Public services essential to developing Bonny Slope West cannot be provided in a timely and cost-effective manner by the City of Portland or Multnomah County,
  • Those services are available in Washington County, and
  • Revenue-raising tools are already in place in Washington County to ensure that those directly benefiting from devel­opment pay for the infrastructure costs.

Who would pay the planning and infrastructure costs of development?

Washington County's objective is to make this change of jurisdiction as close to revenue-neutral for its existing taxpayers as possible.  Existing Washington County residents should not have to pay for public improvements needed in Bonny Slope West—those who benefit should pay for them. 

Changing the county boundary will allow Washington County to plan for what will primarily be residential development in Bonny Slope West. Once the Washington County Board of Commissioners adopts these land use plans, property owners would be required to annex into several Washington County service districts as a condition of development. Property taxes will increase as these additional services are provided to the property.

In addition, new revenue may be necessary to combine with development fees and taxes to pay the cost of new roads and other infrastructure specifically benefiting Bonny Slope West. A clear picture of future property tax costs is expected when Washington County conducts the planning process for this new urban area. 

What kind of development is anticipated for Bonny Slope West?

Development is anticipated to be primarily residential, at densities consistent with the existing urban development in adjacent Washington County.  Bonny Slope West will be subject to the appropriate environmental standards and rules currently applied by Metro, Washington County and Clean Water Services to protect stream corridors, water quality and wildlife habitat.

Frequently Asked Questions - Grouped by topic


Where can I get additional information?

Please contact Suzanne Savin in Washington County's Department of Land Use & Transportation at 503-846-3963.