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Monday, December 3, 2007

SoWhat poodle poop park design tab: $540,000 to $700,000

They're about to let out the contract for design of the "neighborhood park" in the SoWhat district. Looks like the winning bidder was an outfit called Hargreaves Associates in San Francisco. An interested insider sends along a pdf file that apparently contains both the ordinance that's going to be passed by the Portland City Council on Wednesday and a recent draft of the proposed contract between the city and Hargreaves. The draft contract calls for a tab of around $540,000, but the ordinance allows the expense to rise as high as $700,000. If our rough calculations are correct, the city will have spent upwards of $9.5 million on the park, even before ground is broken on it. This for a 2.1-acre park a block away from a noisy freeway. What a deal. Go by streetcar!

Comments (11)

The more I read about Portland, the more it resembles Jersey. Of course, if this were Newark, $9.5 million would be just the mayor's cut.

If the math holds true, Hargreaves' contract will balloon to about $1.1 million by the time all the bills are in.

I'm surprised they are actually planning to use grass in the SoWhat park.

So we have a Parks Department but don't employ anybody with the skill set to "design" a park? And it's going to cost over half a million just to design it? And evidently there's nobody in Oregon qualified enough to tell us where to put the benches, so we're sending a big fat check to California?

Jack, sometimes i think you're a curmudgeon. Sometimes i'm afraid of becoming one myself. ["Stupid Flanders!"]

This is classic bureaucratic excess.
The required mountain of ink and minutia that will never really be used to build the park may make this a fair deal.

Reading through the proposal made me nauceous.

"Opportunities and Constraints analysis diagram"
"Site Analysis Diagrams(s) documenting and synthesizing issues"
"Site Programming Goals"
"Develop park program and urban design relationships"
"Shape the emerging identity of the developing South Waterfront Neighborhood"

On and on and on.

If I were Mayor I'd demand the parks bureau trim 75% of the BS, conduct a simple design competition, maybe lottery out a dozen $10K grants, pick a design and get started building it.

And what has parks been doing all this time? They could have easily had a design and permits pulled by now.

I like this - "Section 2. The Council declares that an emergency exists in order to avoid further delay in executing this PTE Agreement..."

An emergency. Riiiiiiiiight.

Countdown to Oregonian editorial lauding the dog park and applauding the cost...in 5, 4, 3...

C'mon, you nkow our next mayor's attitude, IT MUST BE PERFECT! Of course, this means the taxpayers will be really raped on this one. We still need to account for the I-5 access and the $100M for riverside improvements plus the Tram.

This thing will really be pushing $300M for site improvements for 1 office building (which doesn't pay prop taxes - owned by a not-for-profit) and what a couple of thousand condos. I mean this is like $100K/condo! This really goes beyond the pale!

If the Oregonian editorial lauding this is about to come out, then the one where they're shocked to discover that dogs take a crap, will soon follow. Then it will be determined that we are way underfunded for this dramatic new development that nobody foresaw, and it'll be back to the city council for more cash.

Maria! Amanda! Here's your chance to show the electorate why you should be on the council. Take a stand. Or will it be business as usual when one or two of these bad boys have gone on to other troughs?

Just wait until Scam Adams is the Mayor.

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