|Sidewalks, planning and more planning
THE MID-COUNTY MEMO
Editor's note: Welcome to Perlman's Potpourri, news items from across the Gateway and Parkrose neighborhoods of mid-Multnomah County from veteran Beat Reporter Lee Perlman.
Coming up, the city moves forward with three major planning efforts - bicycles, city planning, providing affordable housing and one construction project for - thanks to economic stimulus funds - sidewalk construction.
More information is needed, is the cry when neighborhood chairs are squeezed for a reply to a structural change at their East Portland Neighborhood Office. So, Woodland Park Neighborhood Association Chair Alesia Reese has organized an informational meeting for those needing information.
Since 1988, activists in Parkrose Heights have been desirous of the city to acquire the distressed private property entirely surrounded by Knott Park. It finally happened.
Also in this month's Potpourri, Perlman reports the Hazelwood Neighborhood Association has blessed the establishment of a 5,000-square-foot community garden at Glenfair Church in outer east Portland.
And finally, because of a last-minute nomination push from Mid-county activists, east Portland cleaned up in this year's Spirit of Portland Awards process, as Powellhurst-Gilbert was named Neighborhood of the Year and Chair Mark White earned an award of his own.
But first, to the city's planning efforts
Planning efforts move forward
The city is moving forward with three major planning efforts, and in some cases the installation of new public facilities as well.
Bicycles. The Portland Bureau of Transportation has completed work on a proposed updating of the city's Bicycle Master Plan, with a final hearing scheduled before the Portland Planning Commission at press time. The revised plan calls for 930 miles of new bike routes. Many of these, in east Portland and elsewhere, employ shared use by bikes and cars of low traffic streets marked only by signage; such routes are planned for parts of Northeast San Rafael and Shaver streets. In some cases there will be exclusive bike lanes. Such a facility is planned for Northeast 102nd Avenue north of Weidler Street but, as a Tier II project, it is unlikely to be implemented for some time. Tier I separated bike lane projects are planned for Southeast Market and Holgate streets. To view the proposed Master Plan map, visit www.portlandonline.com/transportation/bicyclemasterplan.
Portland Plan. This updating of the 1980 Portland Comprehensive Plan, stalled by budget problems and procedural issues, is about to get underway again. A series of kickoff meetings is set for this month. East Portland's meeting is set for 6:30 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 19 at David Douglas High School, 1001 S.E. 135th Ave. For more information about this process, call 503-823-2041 or visit email@example.com.
Concept Plan. This is a series of meetings relating to affordable housing. Unlike the Portland Plan hearings above, each of these meetings is directed toward a particular issue rather than a geographic area. The following is a list of these specific meetings. Industry Challenges will be from 3 to 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 4 at United Way headquarters, 619 S.W. 11th Ave. Affordable Home Ownership will be from 6 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 5 at the New Columbia Community Center, 4605 N. Trenton St. Impediments to Fair Housing will be from 6 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 11 at the East Portland Community Center, 705 N.E. 106th Ave. Homeless Issues will be from 4 to 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 18 at First United Methodist Church, 1838 S.W. Jefferson St. Housing Needs of the Aging Population will be from 1 to 3 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 2 at Mittelman Jewish Community Center, 6651 S.W. Capitol Hwy. For more information on this process or to leave a voicemail, call 503-823-2396. You can also write to Pat Mobley, chair of the Housing and Community Development Commission, at 421 S.W. Sixth Ave., Suit 1100, Portland, OR 97204. Or visit www.portlandonline.com/phb/conplan to send an e-mail.
EPNO to hold informational meeting
The chairs of east Portland's neighborhood associations are still undecided as to whether to leave the East Portland Neighborhood Office the way it is, as a branch of the Portland Office of Neighborhood Involvement. The other option is to change it to a semiautonomous nonprofit run by a board representing those neighborhood groups, as is done in most of the city. Several of the chairs say they lack enough information to decide. To help them, Woodland Park Neighborhood Association Chair Alesia Reese has organized an informational meeting, with presentations by other coalitions and neighborhood offices, beginning at 6 p.m. on Nov. 18 at EPNO, 1017 N.E. 117th Ave.
City acquires Knott Park addition
According to an anonymous neighbor, the .41-acre parcel has been home to members of the Bayer family since 1941. The park's 1988 master plan called for acquisition of the property. In recent years, the property has fallen into disrepair and has been the subject of code compliance actions by city bureaus. Alfred Bayer, who resided at the premises, died last March.
Church seeks community garden
The Hazelwood Neighborhood Association gave its blessing last month to efforts by project supporters Kathy Gould, Aaron and Jan Reed and others to establish a 5,000-square-foot community garden at Glenfair Church, 50 N.E. 143rd Ave. The Portland Bureau of Parks, which manages the city's community garden program, has declined to aid the project, both because it lacks resources to expand the program and because the bureau insists on 10,000 square feet as a garden's minimum size. The church isn't willing to go that far, Gould said. However, the garden has received offers of support from other sources, including David Douglas School District shop teachers who have volunteered to build a shed. The organizers are seeking a neighborhood grant from the East Portland Neighborhood Office for the project.
Some members of the Hazelwood board asked Gould not to make the fence she plans to build around the garden out of chain link material. With this sole caveat, the board unanimously endorsed the project.
This is a great project, a well thought-out community building opportunity, Hazelwood Chair Arlene Kimura said.
White, Powellhurst-Gilbert NA win Spirit awards
Because of a plethora of last-minute nominations from east of 82nd Avenue, east Portland cleaned up in this year's Spirit of Portland Awards process, as Powellhurst-Gilbert was named Neighborhood of the Year and Chair Mark White earned an award of his own.
I'm really thrilled by this, and excited about what it could mean in terms of advancing our agenda, White said. Although burdened by an overabundance of development and an underserving of facilities, such as sidewalks and basic retail services, Powellhurst-Gilbert has a solid program of volunteer activities. These include the city's only police-sanctioned bike patrol, monthly graffiti cleanups, outreach to youth, a new skate park, movies in the park and this year's Eco Expo event. White has been the spark behind much of this and also an effective advocate for extending new services, such as streetcars, to the area.
Other winners include the Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization (IRCO), an all-purpose social service for foreign-born newcomers; the Coalition of Communities of Color, which helps coordinate the work of IRCO with that of the Native American Youth and Family Association and other ethnic groups; and the Helensview High School alternative school program.
The Spirit of Portland Awards are given annually to individuals, groups and businesses nominated by the public and selected by a citizen jury under the direction of the Portland Office of Neighborhood Involvement. This year the awards will be presented at a ceremony at 7 p.m. on Nov. 12 in the Newmark Theater of the Portland Center for the Performing Arts, 1111 S.W. Broadway. The public is invited.
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