The ad about Witham Oaks in the Tuesday Gazette-Times made me think about attributes that are important for a modern city like Corvallis. Easily accessible open space is one of those.

Some other attributes may be more obvious — like library, schools, developed parks and the like — but there are others that make a real difference in how attractive Corvallis is to new businesses and the expansion of businesses already here. The quality of life here is an important factor in attracting people to our area and in the retention of those already here. I believe readily accessible open space with elements of nature in place is a critical part of what makes Corvallis such a great place to live.

The 96 acre-area known as Witham Oaks (adjacent to the Mormon Church on Harrison Boulevard, just across the street from the Oregon State University Dairy Center) is such an area. It contains a walking/biking path, has parking nearby, and is an easy walk from a bus stop. While there are some invasive exotic plants on the property, there’s also  native plans, elements of oak savannah and a wetland. In aggregate these provide a rich and diverse habitat for a wide variety of wildlife. All of this within our city and easily accessible to you! We should retain this area as open space. There is additional information about this property at www.withamoaks.org.

Logan Norris, Corvallis

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