Jill Riebesehl

Our neighborhood’s concerns are similar to most others in Portland: how to navigate our narrow streets, how to respond when houseless folks encamp in residential areas, how to move over to make room for more people, how to interact constructively with builders and with the City Hall.

We spent an evening discussing Central City in Motion and planning with Scott Cohen of the city’s Bureau of Transportation. The goal of CCIM is to ease demands on our older streets from competing pedestrians, bicycles, transit, cars and freight.

HAND board members and neighbors will be giving input, as have many Portlanders during online open houses. Wrap up is expected in September. At this time, a PBOT workshop is set for July 26 in Carvlin Hall at St. Philip Neri.

At our last meeting, Portland Police Officer Leo Yee cited crime stats: car thefts, 12; larceny 24, and asked for comments. He said neighboring groups and businesses are reporting more aggressive behavior by homeless people and that police must now post planned encampment clean ups. He described his interactions with campers and said that the 20 percent rule generally applies: 10% to 20% cause most of the problems.

Officers Tim Engstrom and Ryan Enweiler are assigned to the detail in the central precinct. They prioritize by number of complaints.  Yee’s closing remarks: “Where do these people go? They can’t just disappear.”

We were recently treated to the nearly finalized Division Main Street Design Guidelines that Heather Flint Chatto, HAND’s Linda Nettekoven and many others have been working up for a long time. The guidelines are to be used as a tool to understand our urban architecture and foster communication with builders as we move into the future.

Bill Cunningham of the city’s Bureau of Planning and Sustainability responded to concerns over zone-change notices sent out to residents and owners in Ladd’s Addition. The upshot is that because the neighborhood and its street corridors are already built up there won’t be many changes, but new zoning would reduce the scale on new apartment buildings, loosen rules on interior restrictions and aim to maintain acceptable setbacks and height restrictions when adjacent to single-family houses.

HAND board voted in officers for the year:  Chris Eykamp, chair; Mark Linehan, vice-chair; Jill Riebesehl, secretary; Michelle Sprague, publicity. The board meets on the third Tuesday of the month at 7 pm in Carvlin Hall on the St. Philip Neri campus. The public is welcome and encouraged to participate in discussion.