After the parking election in South Eliot, we have the results. As a reminder, the requirements for forming an area parking permit district were that 50% of ballots had to be returned and 60% of the returned ballots had to be in favor. From our election, we had 53% of ballots returned and 54% were in favor. Although the majority (54%) of ballots were in favor, this is below the 60% threshold so the Area Parking Permit (APP) didn’t pass.
The Portland Bureau of Transportation shared the results by block with us and the general trend was similar to our experiences chatting with folks. The further south people lived, the more in favor of forming APP folks were. There were blocks that voted overwhelmingly in favor of forming an APP.
The next step is PBOT is exploring launching a pilot program that would allow for smaller APP. Right now the APP must be at least 10,000 linear feet. The pilot would allow for a minimum of 5,000 linear feet. They’re doing this to help support us since there are small areas in our neighborhood that really want this. Once PBOT gets City Council’s support of forming pilot APPs, we could consider restarting the process.
Being a senior citizen leads me to avoid risky behavior. I was never a skateboarder and my few attempts at rollerblading ended in scrapes and torn trousers. The idea of balancing on a narrow, two-wheeled platform that moved seemed insane. However, the recent favorable report about Portland’s scooter trial forced me to accept a neighbor’s invitation to test drive one. Like many residents, I begrudge riders on sidewalks, scooters blocking sidewalks, and worse, blocking curb cuts for strollers and wheelchairs. However, the report indicated users surveyed believe these could address the “last mile” problem keeping more city residents from using mass transit or their personal vehicle. So, time to put myself at risk to determine the truth for myself.
As you may remember, parking is an issue for neighbors in Eliot, especially in the southern part of the neighborhood. Whether it’s commuters parking here and taking the MAX into town, or Blazer fans using the streets for free event parking, it is becoming harder for neighbors to be able to find parking.
The stretch of I5 interstate highway running through the Eliot Neighborhood was measured by ODOT using a rubber strip sensor to be among the busiest truck routes in Oregon. This is due to in-city short-haul trucks that pace back and forth through Eliot making Portland freight deliveries. Our research into ODOT and DMV data found 75% of these in-city short-haul trucks are unfiltered. Unfiltered trucks are illegal to manufacture and are banned from all of California because they produce ten times as much diesel particulate as a filtered truck.
I think it is probably time for me to step down. It has been 10+ years of involvement with the ENA Land Use committee and quite a few as chair. During that time we have gone from a bust-to-boom economy and that means a bunch of new buildings in the works. While many under-constructions projects are about to start renting out units, another cluster of buildings on the North Williams corridor is in the works with 4 new proposals adjacent to Williams and Cook alone. Portland’s new zoning map will be going into effect any day now and that might mean another flurry of proposals under the new rules, or a gentle slowdown in the incoming permits.
The City Council gave Portland Streetcar the green light on March 21 to purchase two new streetcars, allowing for more frequent service on the system’s A and B Loops connecting Downtown and the Central Eastside. As Portland continues to add new residents at a rapid pace, the additional vehicles will improve Portland Streetcar’s ability to connect people to housing, jobs, and services in the Central City when the new cars enter the fleet in 2020.
Portlanders cherish easy access to outdoor activities, clean air, and locally roasted coffee. While our city’s air quality has generally improved over the last 30 years, Portland, and especially the Eliot neighborhood, currently has some of the worst air pollution in the nation.
The Eliot Land Use & Transportation committee has had a busy few months. We have a few new energetic members, and we have been busy discussing projects as well.
On the transportation side of things, we have been discussing the possibility of installing a parking permit district in southern Eliot. I am really curious to hear what you think of this. This doesn’t affect me personally, as I live on a block that would be outside of this district. I live on a block that seems to have enough space for everyone to park most of the time. However I realize that there are some who park on the next block over every day, and they feel like it is a problem for them to park on a regular basis.
Work to replace and relocate waterlines that will conflict with sewer and stormwater construction will begin again in June. After completing waterline relocation work, the Water Bureau will perform a series of quality control tests and may identify the need for additional work.
Another turn around the sun and a number of new buildings coming to Eliot. We’ve got a bunch of under-construction projects, including two projects on MLK – Cascadia’s Garlington Center at NE Morris Street (housing and social services) and PCRI’s C-shaped building a few blocks up between Cook and Ivy. There are also two projects going up in the southern Vancouver/Williams Corridor- 160 Units at Hancock and another 45 on Vancouver near Page. A co-housing complex is going up at 20 NE Tillamook and Bridge Housing is proposing a 4-story building at Williams and Tillamook as well.
Environmental Services is coordinating with the Water Bureau to relocate waterlines that will conflict with sewer and stormwater construction in the Eliot neighborhood. Crews were scheduled to begin in mid- December 2017 and continue relocation work through the end of February 2018. The map shows where crews will be working each month. This schedule may change due variables, including conditions underground, weather, subcontractor schedules and availability of materials.
I’ll talk transportation first because there are a few things happening on this front. TriMet has a survey of what improvements they should make this year. There was a bump in bus funding statewide as part of a large transportation package that passed this year. At the top of Eliot’s priority list would be extending line #24 to NW Portland. The #24 is currently a marginally useful line that runs from Legacy Emanuel hospital east along Fremont to Gateway TC. The proposal is to have the line continue westward across the Fremont bridge to Goose hollow, connecting to the MAX on both ends.
Construction of the Eliot Sewer and Stormwater Project begins this fall and will take about a year to complete. City of Portland Environmental Services will be replacing or repairing approximately 10,000 feet of public sewer pipes in the southern part of the Eliot Neighborhood. These pipes are deteriorating due to age or are undersized for the sewer and stormwater flows in this area. The oldest pipe being replaced is 115 years old. These improvements will help protect public health, property and our environment by reducing the possibility of sewage releases into streets, homes and businesses.
ODOT and the City of Portland are continuing to study and design improvements to I-5 between I-84 and I-405 and to local streets near the Broadway-Weidler interchange in Portland. Attend an informational open house to learn about the I-5 Rose Quarter Improvement Project and the planned improvements. The open house is drop-in, so stop by to learn and talk to project team members about: