See below for the Land Use and Transportation update from committee chair, Stephenie Frederick. Questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Click here for a PDF version of this report or click thru to read the report on our website.
To: LUTC Members, Associates, and Affiliates
From: Stephenie Frederick, BDNA LUTC Chair
Date: 10 July 2020
Re: Current land-use, transportation, parks and other LUTC items
Hello, everyone. I hope this July 2020 update finds you doing as well as possible during this worsening Covid-19 crisis. Be sure to send me questions, comments, corrections, and content I missed; I’ll respond, revise, and re-share.
Best wishes, Stephenie
Portland Declares a Climate Emergency
On June 30, 2020, the Portland City Council declared that the city faces a climate emergency. The adopted resolution states in part: “The Portland City Council declares that a human-made climate emergency threatens our city, our region, our state, our nation, humanity, and the natural world, and that such an emergency calls for an immediate mobilization effort initiating greater action, resources, and collaboration that prioritizes frontline communities to restore a safe climate.” For further information, see: https://www.opb.org/news/article/portland-oregon-climate-emergency-ted-wheeler-city-council-i5/
Black Futures Farm
Newly located within the Learning Garden Labs at 6745 SE 60th Avenue is Black Futures Farm, a program of the Black Food Sovereignty Coalition. Director and founder Malcolm Hoover describes the farm as a “direct response to the public health crisis – long before Covid-19 – that African-Americans continue to experience” because of lack of access to high quality food. The farm offers a CSA, fully subscribed in its first year, and a “visual representation of what the City of Portland expresses in their ‘Climate Action Plan’, and in their goal of having ‘access to safe food’”.
This is an exciting and consequential project. For more information, see: “‘Black Futures Farm’ grows food, fosters community,” The Bee, June 2020 (scanned article appears at the end of this report). See also www.blackfutures.farm and www.blackfoodnw.org
Proposed or Pending Development in Brentwood-Darlington
May 3 Accessory dwelling units 1 proposed; 2 issued permits
6 Single family dwellings (7747 SE Lambert) Proposed
8 Single family dwellings (scattered) Permits issued
1 Townhouse Permit issued
June 3 Accessory dwelling units Permits issued
2 Single family dwellings (6625 SE Duke St) Proposed
Homes Sold or for Sale
Homes sold during June 2020: 28 homes in Brentwood-Darlington (Zillow)
As of July 4, 2020: 18 homes for sale in Brentwood-Darlington (www.niche.com)
- Niche describes Brentwood-Darlington as “sparse suburban”.
- Niche states that 33% of B-D residents are renters; 67% are homeowners (in line with findings of the Neighborhood Assessment & Action Plan, PSU, Master’s Program in Urban & Regional Planning)
Demographic Portrait of Brentwood-Darlington
In another month or two, I hope to present an updated demographic profile of Brentwood-Darlington based on the Census Bureau’s 2018 American Community Survey. In advance of this profile, please note that (1) approximately 23% of B-D’s population consists of BIPOC, and (2) that members of BIPOC are suffering from Covid-19 at far higher rates than the white population. In particular, in Oregon, Pacific Islanders have the highest infection rates. According to the ACS, 388 Pacific Islanders were living in our midst in 2018 (most likely they continue to do so). Like other people of color, they are at risk because so many are essential workers who lack adequate health care. For more detail on Covid-19 and Pacific Islanders (and other BIPOC), see:
https://www.oregonlive.com/coronavirus/2020/07/pacific-islanders-have-higher-covid-19-rates-than-any-other-race-in-oregon.html (This is a restricted article; if you are not allowed access, please let me know; I’ll copy it into a Word doc and send it out to you.)
Local: Ogden-Knapp Greenway, One-Way Streets
As reported earlier, we have been trying to persuade PBOT to divert the Ogden-Knapp Greenway through Brentwood Park and thence along Ogden Street instead of Knapp. To date we have not achieved our goal, but we will continue to press for it. At the same time, we could also advocate for changing two or more of the residential streets between SE 52nd and SE 45th avenues (Knapp, Ogden, Rural) to one-way traffic. These narrow streets with cars parked along one side are difficult for both drivers and cyclists to use (the greenway will run along one of them). We could sound out residents and begin discussing this in the near future. Please email me your thoughts on this.
Local: Speeding on Flavel Drive
Because of so many complaints about speeding on Flavel Drive, we are looking into developing a new approach called Neighborhood Speed Watch. Similar to Neighborhood Watch, these programs are beginning to appear in U.S. cities. If this concept looks viable, we could work with the City of Portland in hopes of developing a program for Flavel Drive and other parts of Brentwood-Darlington (and adjoining neighborhoods). For information, see:
In the meantime, for the purpose of acquiring persuasive data to present to the city, a radar speed gun has been ordered for BDNA. This will be shared out to volunteers willing to clock speeders on Flavel Drive. We have several volunteers already.
The URL given below leads to a city map showing the formally designated speeds for Portland’s streets. To use the map, click on a street; info pops up. On this map, the speed limit on Flavel Drive is shown as 20mph; but actual speed signs on Flavel Drive show 25mph.
PBOT’s Director’s Statement on Racial Justice
On June 11, 2020, PBOT Director Chris Warner issued a strong statement about PBOT and racial injustice. Part of the statement reads: “I want our Black colleagues, stakeholders, customers, friends, partners, and community leaders to know that we stand in solidarity and will take action.
- We will not remain silent on issues of social justice and human rights.
- We acknowledge that our institution has contributed immensely to the historic pain and burden you bear.
- We hold ourselves accountable for addressing the concerns raised by the Black community generally and by Black staff specifically as it relates to the impacts of transportation policies, programs, plans, and initiatives that have contributed to racial segregation, inequities, and the marginalization of the Black community in Portland.”
See full statement at https://www.portland.gov/transportation/news/2020/6/11/transportation-justice-work-ahead
PBOT’s “Safe Streets” Initiative
This is a three-part program developed in response to the pandemic:
Quieter low-traffic streets. PBOT has turned sections of Portland’s low-traffic streets (known as “neighborhood greenways”) into “local access only.” This will help limit traffic to essential trips and deliveries. It will also make these streets more accessible for everyone, providing more space to get outside while staying close to home.
Safer busy streets. On busy streets with crowded sidewalks, PBOT is making changes to provide more space and make it easier for people to walk 6 feet apart.
Healthier business districts. PBOT is supporting our many business “main streets” by providing more space for pickups and deliveries, as well as places for customers to line up to pick up their purchases.
PBOT Notification Protocols
Because there appear to be some cases in which PBOT did not notify B-D residents of pending street projects that would affect them, the LUTC reached out to PBOT’s communications czar, John Brady, on June 2, 2020 for information about PBOT’s notification guidelines. No response to our inquiry has been received. We will continue to press for a response.
To combat the climate threat and racial injustice, TriMet “is undertaking a series of immediate short-term actions and pursuing long-term considerations as part of this year’s budget process. Moving forward, TriMet will reduce existing police contracts by six positions and redirect additional funds totaling $1.8 million to community-based public safety approaches.” The agency will retain transit police but only for intervening in matters of public safety. For detail, see: https://news.trimet.org/2020/06/trimet-reallocates-1-8-million-in-funding-from-transit-police-and-additional-sources-to-community-based-services-that-preserve-public-safety
Scientists rate Covid-19 risks of everyday activities . . . transit is most risky. See:
ODOT’s planned widening of I-5 faces opposition
The planned I-5 widening through historic Albina is in trouble. The original freeway construction essentially eliminated Portland’s Black residential and business district. Now local voices are saying “We want the project to be done in a way that rights historic wrongs.” Governor Brown has joined the opposition to the “business as usual” project in favor of Albina Vision’s vision, which includes capping parts of I-5 to create connecting pedestrian corridors, greenspace and affordable housing.
BDNA will shortly write a letter in support of Albina Vision Trust’s position.
Portland Traffic Fatalities:
As of July 6, 2020: 21 traffic fatalities
As of July 6, 2019: 28 traffic fatalities
No updates on parks at this time.
Precision Castparts says coronavirus layoffs totaled 717. Operations appear to be partially shut down at this time, possibly giving Brentwood-Darlington a “plume break.”
Siberia is on fire. Soot and ashes from its many large fires may reach the Pacific Northwest. See https://www.severe-weather.eu/global-weather/siberia-wildfires-dramatic-increase-mk/
Across the United States, millions of Americans cannot afford water for their household needs. As we have time and resources, we will take a look at the situation in Portland and across Oregon. For detail on the general U.S. situation, see: