You wake up to the boom of a car stereo or the smell of cigarette smoke wafting through the back bedroom window. Aggressive drivers rev their engines and honk their horns. It sounds like rush hour, but it’s 6 AM, and this is the destination.
All-day long, looking outside is like playing bingo. Across, the headings are categories like violence, drugs, sex, vandalism, and driving.
Being co-Chairs of the Eliot Neighborhood Association (ENA) has not been what we expected this year. We started out the year wanting to work on vacant land, diesel pollution and wanting to see the city pushed on houselessness. This year has seen the City put up people in the Convention Center for months. It has seen a dramatic reduction in pollution due to the pandemic. And it has seen neighborhood meetings move to the internet. One last thing we wanted to do was to keep space for neighbors to local residents to get help with their issues.
Along the way, the Eliot Neighborhood has been dragged into multiple other issues that we didn’t foresee. Interstate 5 widening near the Broadway Interchange seems to be moving ahead despite a high volume of comments in opposition to the project. The ENA has been vocally opposed to the project from the beginning and we may be getting our toes wet again. We have been contacted regarding rezoning land in the name of providing more affordable housing. We also have been approached by neighbors about crime around Dawson Park and the surrounding blocks. This issue is attracting neighbors to reach out to each other and rally around a common cause.
We are still here, we are still supporting people in Eliot even though we are not always doing it in person. Thank you for continuing to be neighborly through these challenging times. It is not easy but we will get through this. Together
I am Corey Kaster, with Insurance Masters NW (directly behind the Nike Factory Store), and want to share with you an exciting transformation coming to the Eliot Neighborhood!
The present state of the neighborhood with graffiti, crime, and litter doesn’t work. Business owners and residents have been taking the only action they know how and adding lighting, fencing, cameras, etc. While this may be somewhat effective, it also hasn’t made the neighborhood feel like a better place to live/work.
Not only are things bad, but without action I foresee them getting worse resulting in more incidents, disconnection, fear, and reactionary actions.
I envision a new future…. one where there is a vibrant, connected, and engaged business community that is a powerful force in transforming our neighborhood into something currently unimaginable. Imagine spotless streets, connected business owners that powerfully engage with the Neighborhood Association and Sustainable Eliot, and a neighborhood we are excited to live and work in with a sense pride!
If you have a business in the neighborhood and are inspired by this future please email me to connect at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The new Eliot Business District Facebook Group that can be accessed here to build this community is at this link – eliot.im-nw.com
PLEASE NOTE: THIS MEETING HAS BEEN POSTPONED UNTIL THE END OF APRIL. Check back for updated information.
What: Community Forum
Where: Emmanuel Church 1033 N Sumner St
When: April 2nd, 6:00 to 8:00pm
Why: To have more positive engagement and communication with public safety employees and hear about the city’s five-year plan
Regardless if crime is up or down on your individual street or in your neighborhood, starting and participating in an active Neighborhood Watch is always a good idea. The City of Portland’s Crime Prevention program is hoping to start new Watch groups and rekindle older ones in the Eliot Neighborhood area. Starting a Watch group is really very easy. All it takes is one or two neighbors on a street to volunteer to be the “Organizer” and reach out to me and we pick a training date and time for the initial meeting. These are usually done in the organizer’s home in the evening to ensure the greatest amount of participation.
More than 50 new Neighborhood Watch groups started in 2015. Mark Wells, Community Organizing Specialist with the Crime Prevention Program City of Portland, is excited about next year and continuing to grow and strengthen our Watch groups throughout the city. With Wells’ help, Eliot neighborhood has three blocks which have organized themselves into a Neighborhood Watch and at least one other working on the process. Is your block one of these four? If not, consider starting one today.
Our block had its first Neighborhood Watch meeting in August; partly to get to know our neighbors and work together to make ours a better place to live and partly in response to several recent incidents. The following are what neighbors reported at that meeting.
Regardless if crime is up or down on your individual street or in your neighborhood, starting and participating in an active Neighborhood Watch is always a good idea. The City of Portland’s Crime Prevention program is hoping to start new Watch groups and rekindle older ones in the Eliot Neighborhood area.
If you check out the Portland Crime Map for our neighborhoods, it’s apparent that theft from cars and vehicle theft are two of the most common type of crimes in our neighborhoods. It’s also apparent when you’re biking down a busy street and see a smattering of broken glass in front of you that you have to quickly zigzag around.
Susan and I have found empty UPS and FedEx delivery packages on our daily dog walks. Out of curiosity we traced a few back to the address and found they had been stolen off the doorstep. After reporting our concern to the delivery drivers, I was told that sometimes thieves follow delivery trucks around and take packages that look like they contain valuables or prescription drugs.
Eliot’s reputation as a high crime area, along with NE Portland generally, is undeserved. Crime statistics are skewed by criminal activity directed at visitors from out of the area to the Rose Quarter and Lloyd Center, primarily car prowls and thefts, but thefts from stores and offices as well. As the bank robber Willy Horton said, “You go where the money is.”
Graffiti: spray-painted names and messages sprawled across business walls, dumpsters, electrical poles, and even on the sidewalk. In Eliot, the summer months bring graffiti. When not cleaned up, tagged walls encourage other taggers to stake their claim in our neighborhood.
Hello, all. It looks like the nicer weather is joining us earlier than it did the last couple years. That’s great for all our outdoor activities, but brings a few perils as well. The news is good about warning everyone to block 2nd story windows at four inches so toddlers don’t open them and fall out. Putting a dowel in your 1st floor windows will allow you to get some airflow through the house without providing an easy way for burglars to get in while you are away. Try to secure them so that when the window is closed, they don’t fall out of the way and allow the window to be opened from there.
Let me start off by saying Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Mele Kalikimaka, Feliz Navidad, and anything else I might have missed! I apologize for not having made it to a meeting in several months. We have been quite busy with Occupy Portland and several related events, and have been unable to make it to the bulk of the neighborhood meetings. .