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Eugene, Lane County Land Swap Discussion

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EUGENE, Ore. — A potential land swap is in the works in downtown Eugene between the City of Eugene and Lane County.

Both parties are discussing the possibility of swapping the county’s Butterfly Lot, a parking lot on the corner of 8th and Oak Streets in downtown Eugene, with part of the city’s unused City Hall building lot.

On Tuesday morning, the Lane County Board of Commissioners met to discuss the swap potential.

“Our issue with the county is we have a courthouse that is outdated,” said Alicia Hays, Interim County Administrator. “And we need to be proactive about how we’re going to deal with that and replace that.”

Lane County officials say the first part of the conversation is asking where the courthouse would go.

“We’ve been talking about: is there a possibility to put it on the Butterfly Lot?” Hays said. “But now we would be saying: is there a possibility to put it on half of the City of Eugene’s lot?” 

Lane County says the Butterfly Lot is a potential site for a new courthouse, but says the property’s dimensions make it a bad choice.

Meanwhile, the Farmer’s Market is looking for a spot to expand.

In Tuesday’s meeting, commissioners discussed the idea that if the county was able to build a courthouse where the City Hall’s building is, the city in return could use the Butterfly Lot to provide a permanent spot for the Farmer’s Market.

“We got the ok to move forward to create a process to get community input and to answer all the questions people have posed,” Hays said. “And to see if it’s possible.”

The county and the city are planning to hold a joint hearing in early June to get the public’s input.

“It’s a community conversation that needs to continue,” Hays said. “And that’s what we got the nod today – we got the nod to continue with the community conversation.”

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