Briton sells land to CGCC for HR site


News staff writer

August 3, 2005

The quick turnaround on a sale of land for a Hood River college campus has sparked rumors of an “insider deal.”

But Teunis Wyers, attorney for Icon Holdings, LLC, said that speculation is totally unfounded. In fact, he said Robert Gilham was reluctant to sell the 13.5 acre site in the Heights that he was still in the process of purchasing.

The England native, who lives part-time in Hood River, had plans to develop a subdivision that would have been worth more than $3 million.

However, Gilham was informed that the college (CGCC), as a public entity, could condemn the property and buy it at a lesser rate.

He said at that point, he decided not to get caught up in legal wrangling and agreed to a sale. Gilham did request $375,000 more than he had paid for the property two weeks earlier.

He felt that was fair compensation for the time and money that he had spent to gain a major right-of-way to the site from 12th Street and Pacific Avenue.

“They basically made us an offer that we couldn’t refuse,” said Wyers.

Bob Cole, CGCC executive director of resource development, said Gilham was not threatened with condemnation, just informed about that possibility.

He said the final settlement was equitable at $1.3 million plus a share of the closing costs. The land for the new campus is located immediately west of 12th Street (Tucker Road) and adjacent to the Hood River Ford dealership. The property borders Indian Creek and has limited frontage along 12th Street.

“We all knew that condemnation was an option but not one we would have used unless he had asked an exorbitant price,” said Cole.

The purchase is contingent upon site inspections and other work to ensure the acreage is appropriate for development.

A due diligence period started on July 22 and the closing is set for Sept. 21.

The college selected the land in the Heights after reviewing 11 sites in Hood River over the past four years.

That process gained new urgency with the passage of the bond measure last November, and has been guided in part by the development of an academic master plan.

That study led by Dr. Susan Wolff, dean of instruction, will help determine infrastructure design in both The Dalles and Hood River.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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