Chris Cha, the owner of Smokin’ Fire Fish was almost put out of business because of COVID-19, but the king of collaboration and kindness, Jaime Soltero of Tamale Boy offered his take on a ghost kitchen at the 668 N Russell location.
By Andrine and Howard de la Rocha
After our snowy and icy February, it looks as if spring is coming our way! We’ve used some of our Patron funding to acquire wood chips from ChipDrop, which were in abundance after the ice storm knocked so many branches and trees down. Thanks to New Seasons for donating cardboard for the sheet mulching.
By Kira Smith
Do you have an idea for a project that will improve your community and the environment? Environmental Services has resources to help fund your ideas for planting trees and native plants in the households, businesses, non-profits, schools, and local places of worship that you are involved in within the Eliot Neighborhood.
By Jody Guth
Ahhh… Spring! Not many 6-letter words evoke as much joy and promise. It certainly was a long, cold, challenging winter, and picking up bag after bag of garbage isn’t particularly fun – not when it’s 35 degrees of rain, sleet, and wind…but like the postal service, the Eliot Adopt-a-Block gang persevered. Hard work, but the results are oh, so worth it when you walk down a sidewalk or street and don’t have to step over broken glass, tossed fast-food cups, straws, and wrappers, cigarette butts, abandoned face masks and, well…you get the picture.
An abundance of history and personal stories are woven into the fabric of Portland. So, to make sure the stories are not lost as generations of our residents pass on and memories begin to fade, here is one family’s story and a bit of history with links at the end of this article to learn more.
For many of the Black residents of Eliot, the family stories begin outside of Oregon. The great migration from 1917-1970 brought both Black and white residents of the South to states in the North, Midwest, and West. Looking for an opportunity and a better life, many people landed in Oregon during the swell of migration during WWII because of the rise of shipbuilding and other war-related industries. With the influx of people moving to Portland, the city had to find a place for all these new residents to live.
Come together with SOLVE and community members for a cleanup in the Boise- Elliot/Irvington Neighborhoods starting at Irvington Park! This event will be entirely outdoors and will comply with social distancing guidelines. After a safety talk and getting cleanup supplies, we will spend a couple of hours picking up litter in the neighborhood to improve our community and protect our ecosystem.www.solveoregon.org
There’s an upcoming cleanup happening at Irving Park this Wednesday, March 31 from 10 AM – Noon. Volunteers will be given cleanup supplies, instruction, and then will be sent out to clean the park and surrounding neighborhood. We’d love it if you could share this volunteer opportunity with your association’s network! https://www.solveoregon.org/opportunity/a0C1I00000QFQZp
The Eliot Neighborhood is a geographically unique neighborhood in Portland. Bounded geographically from the Willamette River to NE 7th Avenue and the Fremont Bridge/Fremont Street to N/NE Broadway Avenue, Eliot is shaped like a rectangle plus a triangle. While most current residents in Eliot live between N Vancouver and NE 7th, that was not always the case.
The most progressive and potentially transformative transportation program in the City of Portland this century is a sneaky transit efficiency-boosting project called the Rose Lane Project. The goal of this project is to improve the speed of transit across the City. Many of the places where buses get most stuck in traffic are in central Portland, so you may have noticed some small upgrades already. Bus-only lanes heading towards the Steel Bridge on NW Everett Street were an early project that affects the #44, #4, and #35 routes that run through Eliot by serving as a northern extension of the Transit Mall into the Rose Quarter Transit Center.
Recently, the Rose Lanes have been painted in Southern Eliot along NE Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard. The right lane of the road is now transit and right-turns only for several miles. I have been using this route a lot on my commute by bike and I have noticed that the road feels a bit tamer with a small portion of the street designated for transit instead of the entire road being for all vehicles. It does not appear that traffic has been slowed at all by this change. I look forward to more changes from this project. You can find out more information about this by looking up the Portland Rose Lane Project.
Well, progress is happening at the Gladys McCoy Memorial Garden. Kate Thompson, the organizer of the garden restoration, says, “John Barker, the garden designer got the Hardy Plant Society to approve the memorial garden as a 501(c)3 under their umbrella and the society has approved some funds for plantings but we will need more.”
By Reverend Maria McDowell
For the last year, St. Philip the Deacon has been a member of the Leaven Community Land & Housing Coalition. We have worked with other faith communities to change city code as a part of the Expanding Affordable Housing Opportunities grant. We successfully lobbied for changes to city code to allow faith communities to use their abundant land to build affordable housing.
Almost every day during Covid I have run past TwentySix Café, the local coffee shop near my house. I used to visit more frequently when I would walk my dog stopping to catch up with a couple of friends, chat with some acquaintances, grab a cup of tea and a dog treat. Then I’d carry on with my walk. I was always refreshed after those short visits but still, I felt like something was missing. It is hard to take the time and be present on most days of our life. Our busy schedules, thoughts of work, and worrying about far-away family and friends keep us from seeing what’s important and right under our noses.
By Susan Bailey
Earlier this year Baileywick Properties pioneered the use of Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) panels for small apartment construction. CLTs have been used in a handful of larger projects in Portland, but this is believed to be a first for a small project where construction costs are critical. In this case, they were used to speed the building process and reduce the disruption of neighbors. (see the picture of the first week’s construction).
There’s a new restaurant in Eliot! The owners are John-Fletcher “Fletch” Halyburton, a former operations director in the Toro Bravo restaurant group, and his sister, Emily Peterson, a North Carolina-based wine industry veteran and the name is an homage to John’s aunts. Lottie and Zula’s is serving up amazing breakfast sandwiches, tantalizing lunch options, and now Sunday dinners.
By Monique Gaskins
Cheers to 2021!
We are unquestionably in the middle of winter and experiencing shorter days and chillier weather. When the days get darker, I try to remember to treat myself to something nice. Luckily, there are lots of options to support your winter cheer without having to leave the neighborhood.
By Kate Thompson
The efforts to restore and update the Gladys McCoy Memorial Garden continue with generous support from the NIKE Athlete volunteers, John Barker and others. The Athletes energetically maintain the garden with trash removal and leaf raking and debris removal on a regular basis. (We congratulate them on the reopening of their store, which was closed by the pandemic and vandalized after the murder of George Floyd.)