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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on November 15, 2007 11:35 AM. The previous post in this blog was Small business tip of the day. The next post in this blog is Reader poll: Will Grampy stick around this time?. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.



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Thursday, November 15, 2007

PDC 86's public market bid for fed building

An alert reader who attended yesterday's PDC commissioners meeting sends along some interesting notes about the part of the meeting regarding the competing interests for that federal building on northeast Broadway over by the main post office. You'll recall that both the Portland public market project and Pacific Northwest College of Art are salivating over that building, which the feds are looking to unload.

Recently, the college scooped the public market folks by invoking a federal preference of some kind for educational facilities, and yesterday the PDCers were considering what to do about that. Our correspondent reports as follows -- note that the opinions expressed in his or her report are not necessarily mine:

The PDC Commission Meeting was a doozy and classic PDC at its best. The PPM basically got their a*ses kicked, and PDC sent a pretty backhanded message that they have no interest in helping (read paying for) the PPM to get the 511 building. While no vote by the PDC Commission was required, the PDC board unanimously agreed to support PNCA and to abort the RFP process unless the GSA does not chose PNCA.

In a nutshell this is what happened:

* PDC gave a presentation on their staff report explaining PNCA's desire to apply directly to the GSA for the 511 building and PDC's recommendation that given this new development to postpone their RFP process until the GSA decision has happened (which will take anywhere between 30 days and 2.5 months) and then only if the GSA has rejected PNCA.

* PDC emphasized that they have no control over the building as the GSA owns it, that the GSA already has their own public process for applications and decisions on who will get the building and that it makes no sense to spend public money and staff time on an RFP process if the GSA will be making a decision before the PDC RFP process can be complete.

* PDC also emphasized that PNCA has every right to apply directly to the GSA, as does anyone else.

* PDC emphasized that because PNCA is an educational facility, under GSA guidelines they are eligible for a reduction in the building purchase price up to 100% market value and that by PDC getting involved with PNCA for the application through an RFP process, PNCA might lose this discount thus raising the costs of the development.

* PDC also stated, in response to the question of one of the Commissioners, that if the PPM were to share space with PNCA in the building then PNCA would also lose this discount as GSA rules indicate 100% of the building must be used for educational purposes in order to get the discount.

* PDC also felt that continuing a public process at this point would not be fair to any interested parties and would be a waste of time.

* PDC also emphasized that any GSA stated qualifying group can apply directly to the GSA and so a PDC process is not really needed.

* PDC also felt that PNCA had a solid finance, acquisition, and use plan in place and that PNCA will probably require significantly less public money than other uses probably will, thus making PDC want to back PNCA.

* Finally, Ron Paul [the main moving force behind the public market] or Amelia Hard (can't remember which) have written to the GSA to protest this decision. In my opinion that was a stupid, stupid move as they have already alienated themselves once from the GSA by publicly announcing they already have the building. This latest move won't help them.

There was also a significant amount of public testimony. Highlights:

* PNCA's president and student body president spoke and did a fine job explaining how PNCA would benefit this building, how PNCA is the fastest growing arts school in the U.S., how PNCA helps meet city economic and planning goals and will act as a bridge between Old Town/China Town and the Pearl and how they benefit Portland's goals for a creative class economy. Members of the PNCA student council were also present and all the blue hair suits seemed charmed at their geeky art school presence. (it makes the boomers feel cool to support an arts school).

* Harsch Development also spoke and did a killer job in explaining the overall benefits to the PNCA development.

* Ron Paul rambled. He spoke a lot about the need for an open and fair process, but not once did he make a compelling case for the PPM. Frankly, he sounded stupid was not convincing, as he was basically ignoring the facts that the GSA already has their own public process in place and that PDC has no obligation or even control over the building. The room was silent after he spoke and the Commission had no questions or comments for him.

* Melvin Mark (the developer that previously announced he is interested in the building and having the PPM in it) also spoke and echoed Ron, but he too had no compelling reason for continuing the RFP other than an "open and fair public process."

* Amelia Hard from the PPM Board spoke and pretty much said the same thing as Ron and Melvin, although she was a bit more articulate.

* There were, however, a couple of surprising people that wanted continuation of the RFP such as Patricia Gardner from the Pearl Neighborhood Association and a cranky regular PDC critic...

On one hand, I can understand the disappointment of the PPM and Melvin Mark, and PDC did state that they were going to do an RFI so of course to switch it now is going to ruffle some feathers. However, the PNCA and PDC made a very solid and rational case for placing the RFP process on hold and I have to say I am with them. They actually did the right thing for once and took into account the balance between a competitive bid process and the use of public funds...Good for them.

Comments (11)

Very interesting report. At first blush it sure seems like PNCA getting the building would be the best result for Portland as a whole--in that it would allow an increasingly successful and meaningful school to expand its operations, and public funds might not need to be spent on the acquisition or restoration of that fine building.

If the PDC isn't siding with Melvan Mark, one of its more "natural" constituents, then PNCA must be making a pretty compelling argument for its plan.

I don't think Harsch(nitzer) Investment (Don Mazziotti, "consultant") is exactly a new player on the scene.

I don't get why Harsch is even concerned about the use of the 511 building.

I think Harsch will be the acting developer for PNCA

"I don't think Harsch(nitzer) Investment (Don Mazziotti, "consultant") is exactly a new player on the scene."

I see your point--somehow I didn't note that there's also a major developer making a pitch for the PNCA side. So maybe the influential developers are cancelling each other out in the mind of PDC, allowing the agency to proceed according to the best interests of the city.

Anyway, I don't claim to have any special insight into this. It just seems like the building would make a great art school facility. But mainly I'm excited by the prospect of the building being restored and put to significant use.

"But mainly I'm excited by the prospect of the building being restored and put to significant use." Exactly, Richard. And for the credit of PDC so do they, but with the least amount of public money involved and I think it's quite fair to say that we all know the Portland Public Market will require quite a bit of public money.

In addition if the PPM really wants the building, why don't they just apply for it directly to the federal government as the post above states? I don't get that part.

****In addition if the PPM really wants the building, why don't they just apply for it directly to the federal government as the post above states? I don't get that part.*******

As a fan of Portland having a Public Market I have stayed close to this saga. I spoke to Ron Paul a couple of weeks ago and the bottom line is ...... He doesn't have the money to do a public market.

Basically even if the Melvin Mark plan got the building Paul indicated he would have to raise several million dollars to rehab the market area and make the market feasible financially. So PNCA has a use AND the money to do the building and Ron Paul doesn't.

By the way great building for a public market. Too bad but absent another PDC handout it ain't gonna happen.

Greg C

Maybe PDC is passe' on this project. PDC (public money) in the fastest growing art school in the country? Sounds like PNCA has it's own money tree and no need for urban renewal dollors. Urban is renewal is not needed on Oregon college campuses, the Pearl or Sowhat. Urband renewal should take place where urban renewal is needed not where developers dictatr. How about East Portland, east of 82. No another cent of public money should go to Groupo Homer.

Well, Ron has had 10 years to build a solid coalition of supporters and a strong funding base and non-profit including a foundation and/or solid funding stream for the development and ongoing management of a PPM. Yet the Portland Public Market has spent close to $100k in public money (including federal money) for nothing but feasibility studies.

Ten years is long enough. Sometimes you just have to say, enough is enough. You've had enough support and time and haven't produced much...moving on...

Also, you know, there are plenty of underutilized properties on the eastside just begging for a catalyst development and anchor type development that the PPM could bring. Malivin Mark and Ron; why not focus on those? And hey, why not focus on actually bringing the public into the process of a public market. I mean, the PPM didn't even announce on their website that they were speaking at PDC yesterday. That's not public, that's just exclusionary and just plain lame.

Finally PPM (and yes I am talking to you), rather than just blame PDC for taking a rational approach to balancing specialized interests with limited public funds, why not take a serious look at your organization and honestly look at what is working and not working (because clearly many things are not working) and address those from an organization standpoint? Do you think you are able and really ready to do this? Honestly, it is really needed.

I'm a big foodie, whereas I have to admit the aesthetics of most contemporary art escapes me. Nevertheless, I'll take the art college over the public market any day.

The future is all about knowledge, thus it behooves Portland to foster more and better institutions of higher learning.

On the other hand, we don't need another place to buy organic radicchio for $19 a pound. Which is what a Ron Paul public market promises to be--Whole Foods without walls. Especially we don't need another specialty food store in NW Portland.

Really, a public market should be on the inner east side, where all the old produce companies used to operate (and some still do). It should be ramshackle, not fancy, and have humble beginnings. I could see a little city seed money to help get it started, and then let it grow on it's own. There are old warehouses that could be converted in the area along lower Sandy, Stark, Morrison.

I'd personally like to see it near the Esplanade at Salmon, where there are a couple of huge parking lots. Then open the parking lots up to flea markets on weekends, with hardly any rules about what can be sold. There's a wonderful produce market and flea market in San Jose that has an incredible variety of ethnic foods and other products. Sure, some of it is cheesy, but other stuff would never make its way to a yuppie market. And it's something the average food shopper can afford.

I totally agree with some of these posts. The market could be great, but not with these folks running it. They have failed Portland 101: you got to make it a community effort. Ron Paul is a nice guy, but he needs to broaden his approach.


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In Vino Veritas

Lange, Pinot Gris 2015
Kiona, Lemberger 2014
Willamette Valley, Pinot Gris 2015
Aix, Rosé de Provence 2016
Marchigüe, Cabernet 2013
Inazío Irruzola, Getariako Txakolina Rosé 2015
Maso Canali, Pinot Grigio 2015
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Kirkland, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2016
Cantele, Salice Salentino Reserva 2013
Whispering Angel, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2013
Avissi, Prosecco
Cleto Charli, Lambrusco di Sorbara Secco, Vecchia Modena
Pique Poul, Rosé 2016
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Rosé 2016
Stoller, Pinot Noir Rosé 2016
Chehalem, Inox Chardonnay 2015
The Four Graces, Pinot Gris 2015
Gascón, Colosal Red 2013
Cardwell Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
L'Ecole No. 41, Merlot 2013
Della Terra, Anonymus
Willamette Valley, Dijon Clone Chardonnay 2013
Wraith, Cabernet, Eidolon Estate 2012
Januik, Red 2015
Tomassi, Valpolicella, Rafaél, 2014
Sharecropper's Pinot Noir 2013
Helix, Pomatia Red Blend 2013
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2013
Locations, Spanish Red Wine
Locations, Argentinian Red Wine
La Antigua Clásico, Rioja 2011
Shatter, Grenache, Maury 2012
Argyle, Vintage Brut 2011
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16 Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2014
Benton Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
Primarius, Pinot Gris 2015
Januik, Merlot 2013
Napa Cellars, Cabernet 2013
J. Bookwalter, Protagonist 2012
LAN, Rioja Edicion Limitada 2011
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Rutherford 2009
Denada Cellars, Cabernet, Maipo Valley 2014
Marchigüe, Cabernet, Colchagua Valley 2013
Oberon, Cabernet 2014
Hedges, Red Mountain 2012
Balboa, Rose of Grenache 2015
Ontañón, Rioja Reserva 2015
Three Horse Ranch, Pinot Gris 2014
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
Nelms Road, Merlot 2013
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Pinot Gris 2014
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2012
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2013
Villa Maria, Sauvignon Blanc 2015
G3, Cabernet 2013
Chateau Smith, Cabernet, Washington State 2014
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16
Willamette Valley, Rose of Pinot Noir, Whole Clusters 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Ca' del Baio Barbaresco Valgrande 2012
Goodfellow, Reserve Pinot Gris, Clover 2014
Lugana, San Benedetto 2014
Wente, Cabernet, Charles Wetmore 2011
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
King Estate, Pinot Gris 2015
Adelsheim, Pinot Gris 2015
Trader Joe's, Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley 2015
La Vite Lucente, Toscana Red 2013
St. Francis, Cabernet, Sonoma 2013
Kendall-Jackson, Pinot Noir, California 2013
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Napa Valley 2013
Erath, Pinot Noir, Estate Selection 2012
Abbot's Table, Columbia Valley 2014
Intrinsic, Cabernet 2014
Oyster Bay, Pinot Noir 2010
Occhipinti, SP68 Bianco 2014
Layer Cake, Shiraz 2013
Desert Wind, Ruah 2011
WillaKenzie, Pinot Gris 2014
Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2013
Des Amis, Rose 2014
Dunham, Trautina 2012
RoxyAnn, Claret 2012
Del Ri, Claret 2012
Stoppa, Emilia, Red 2004
Primarius, Pinot Noir 2013
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Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Deer Creek, Pinot Gris 2015
Beaulieu, Rutherford Cabernet 2013
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
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Benziger, Cabernet, Sonoma 2012
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The Occasional Book

Marc Maron - Waiting for the Punch
Phil Stanford - Rose City Vice
Kenneth R. Feinberg - What is Life Worth?
Kent Haruf - Our Souls at Night
Peter Carey - True History of the Kelly Gang
Suzanne Collins - The Hunger Games
Amy Stewart - Girl Waits With Gun
Philip Roth - The Plot Against America
Norm Macdonald - Based on a True Story
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Bill Bryson - A Short History of Nearly Everything
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Sara Varon - Bake Sale
Stephen King - 11/22/63
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Beverly Cleary - A Girl from Yamhill, a Memoir
Kent Haruf - Plainsong
Hope Larson - A Wrinkle in Time, the Graphic Novel
Rudyard Kipling - Kim
Peter Ames Carlin - Bruce
Fran Cannon Slayton - When the Whistle Blows
Neil Young - Waging Heavy Peace
Mark Bego - Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul (2012 ed.)
Jenny Lawson - Let's Pretend This Never Happened
J.D. Salinger - Franny and Zooey
Charles Dickens - A Christmas Carol
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Deborah Eisenberg - Transactions in a Foreign Currency
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. - Slaughterhouse Five
Kathryn Lance - Pandora's Genes
Cheryl Strayed - Wild
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Jack London - The House of Pride, and Other Tales of Hawaii
Jack Walker - The Extraordinary Rendition of Vincent Dellamaria
Colum McCann - Let the Great World Spin
Niccolò Machiavelli - The Prince
Harper Lee - To Kill a Mockingbird
Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Kraus - The Nanny Diaries
Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Sharon Creech - Walk Two Moons
Keith Richards - Life
F. Sionil Jose - Dusk
Natalie Babbitt - Tuck Everlasting
Justin Halpern - S#*t My Dad Says
Mark Herrmann - The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law
Barry Glassner - The Gospel of Food
Phil Stanford - The Peyton-Allan Files
Jesse Katz - The Opposite Field
Evelyn Waugh - Brideshead Revisited
J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
David Sedaris - Holidays on Ice
Donald Miller - A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith
C.S. Lewis - The Magician's Nephew
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William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Ivan Doig - Bucking the Sun
Penda Diakité - I Lost My Tooth in Africa
Grace Lin - The Year of the Rat
Oscar Hijuelos - Mr. Ives' Christmas
Madeline L'Engle - A Wrinkle in Time
Steven Hart - The Last Three Miles
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day
Karen Armstrong - The Spiral Staircase
Charles Larson - The Portland Murders
Adrian Wojnarowski - The Miracle of St. Anthony
William H. Colby - Long Goodbye
Steven D. Stark - Meet the Beatles
Phil Stanford - Portland Confidential
Rick Moody - Garden State
Jonathan Schwartz - All in Good Time
David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Anthony Holden - Big Deal
Robert J. Spitzer - The Spirit of Leadership
James McManus - Positively Fifth Street
Jeff Noon - Vurt

Road Work

Miles run year to date: 5
At this date last year: 3
Total run in 2017: 113
In 2016: 155
In 2015: 271
In 2014: 401
In 2013: 257
In 2012: 129
In 2011: 113
In 2010: 125
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