On the transportation side, a few things are heating up. City staff hosted a meeting about a future NE 7th or 9th avenue bikeway. There was a strong preference to use 7th in Eliot’s section of the greenway due to it being cheaper and being able to address other safety concerns on 7th avenue at the same time. There is concern from the City’s perspective about diverting many of the cars from 7th to other routes although they have some tools to help this.
There are quite a few projects going up right now in and around Eliot. North Eliot is getting most of the action. The two proposed large six-plus story tower developments at NE Fremont and Williams as well as the project at NE 7th and Russell have driven the most uproar. However, there are a number of other developments being proposed or already under construction.
During the great recession of 2008, many construction projects nationwide halted. New project proposals slowed to a rate that has not been seen in recent memory. Property values fell nationwide, but some interesting trends were associated with those changes. More Americans are starting to value walkable, close-in neighborhoods, like Eliot, over more car-dependent areas. And these preferences are not just with their hearts but also with their dollars. This was a trend that has been going on in Portland for quite a while, but it is having some real results on the ground in Eliot in the ‘10s.
Near midnight on Monday February 5th, the Morning Star Baptist Church caught fire. Flames could be seen over homes and treetops throughout the neighborhood. By 1:30 am many residents were still gathered in disbelief sharing stories of the historic church.