Port of Portland Readies Proposals for Hillsboro, Ore., Airport Expansion

HILLSBORO, Ore. -- By 2025, Hillsboro Airport's parking lot could include as much as one-fourth of the Washington County Fair Complex, and expected growth in flights and aircraft could require a costly move of Northwest Cornell Road. The Port of...

To keep up with an expected increase in flights and to segregate helicopter flights, a new Charlie pattern would need to be built on the northeast end of the airport, Griffin said.

If so, that would mean more noise along that end of the airport, Griffin said.

Henry Oberhelman, who lives along the airport's north edge, worries that may mean more disruption for him.

"We're going to be right below the flight area," said Oberhelman, who is a member of the Washington County Residents for Safe & Quiet Skies and Concerned Residents Against Student Helicopters, a group lobbying against helicopter noise at the airport. Oberhelman also worries about the impact airport growth will have on small business in the area.

Wink Brooks, a city planning director who sits on the master plan committee representing Hillsboro, told Port officials to consider scaling back on acquiring 90 acres. The city, he said, hopes to expand industrial land north of the airport and would like as much space possible. Alternative C also calls for building the new 3,600-foot runway farther north of the airport, which would require that Northwest Evergreen Road be moved. About 2,500 feet of the road, which was last moved in 2001, would shift about 300 feet to the north.

Like package B, part of package C includes turning part of the fairgrounds into parking and business space. Another C option includes pushing aircraft parking space closer to the airfield and moving a series of new hangars toward the north end of the airport.

In the coming months, Port officials plan to refine the package, which may include a combination of alternatives from the three packages. The project committee will meet again in March.